Reaction difference of oxyradical generation and luminol-dependent photoemission of zymosan- and phorbol ester-treated neutrophils were investigated using a conventional photomultiplier and ultrasensitive photonic imaging technique. Zymosan-treated cells released a concentrated photonic burst corresponding to the cellular distribution. In contrast, phorbol ester-treated cells produced a negligible level of photoemission, and the additional application of Ca2+ ionophore enhanced the photonic burst, which was gradually spread out into extracellular space. Serine protease inhibitors did not attenuate PMA-induced chemiluminescence but did attenuate zymosan-induced chemiluminescence. This suggests the involvement of serine protease in the respiratory burst of phagocytizing neutrophils.
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