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Eur J Immunol. 1993 Oct;23(10):2488-97.

Association of the p56lck protein tyrosine kinase with the Fc gamma RIIIA/CD16 complex in human natural killer cells.

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Veterans Affairs Medical Center, Amarillo, TX 79106.


The multimeric Fc gamma RIIIA (CD16) complex is expressed on the surface of natural killer (NK) cells and is composed of a 50-70-kDa transmembrane glycoprotein Fc gamma receptor (CD16), the T cell receptor (TCR)-zeta chain, and the Fc epsilon RI gamma chain. Cross-linking Fc gamma RIIIA initiates the rapid tyrosine phosphorylation of multiple substrates including the zeta subunit and causes subsequent cell activation and antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC). The subunits of the Fc gamma RIIIA complex lack intrinsic protein tyrosine kinase (PTK) activity, suggesting that receptor-induced tyrosine phosphorylation events are mediated by a nonreceptor PTK. We report here that the human Fc gamma RIIIA is complexed with p56lck, a src-family PTK previously found associated with the CD4 and CD8 receptors on T cells. Upon engagement of the CD16 receptor, p56lck is rapidly (within 30 s) and transiently phosphorylated on tyrosine residues. Several Fc gamma RIIIA-associated proteins are identified in immune complex kinase assays including the TCR-zeta subunit, a p70-90 zeta-associated protein (ZAP), p50a (acidic) and p50b (basic), and p56lck. We demonstrate that the src-family protein tyrosine kinase inhibitor, herbimycin A, blocks increased intracellular calcium levels and ADCC caused by CD16 cross-linking on NK3.3 cells. Likewise cross-linking CD16 with the protein tyrosine phosphatase CD45, abrogates CD16-induced calcium mobilization. These data suggest that p56lck is physically associated with Fc gamma RIIIA (CD16) and functions to mediate signaling events related to the control of NK cellular cytotoxicity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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