Molecular characterization and functional analysis of the leukocyte surface protein CD31.
The CD31 Ag is a surface glycoprotein of 130 kDa with a broad cellular distribution. We show that among peripheral human blood cells, it is expressed on monocytes, granulocytes, platelets, and a subpopulation of lymphocytes. Activation of granulocytes leads to down-regulation of CD31 molecule expression. Sequence analysis and quantitative measurements of the relatedness of the CD31 molecule to other known proteins demonstrate that it consists of six Ig constant domains and that each domain bears substantial similarity to Fc gamma R domains. We find, however, that the CD31 molecule does not bind Ig Fc domains. On human monocytes we demonstrate that CD31 mAb recognizing certain epitopes of the CD31 molecule induce the generation of reactive oxygen metabolites. No such effect was seen with human granulocytes. By using two CD31 mAb, termed 1B5 and 7E4, we analyzed the requirements for activation of the monocyte respiratory burst via CD31 Ag in more detail. We show that signal transduction occurs via formation of a CD31 Ag-mAb-Fc gamma R complex involving either Fc gamma RI (CD64) or Fc gamma RII (CDw32) molecules.