Anaemia in rheumatoid arthritis: pathogenesis, diagnosis and treatment
Acidic isoferritin (AIF) has been shown to be released by cells from patients with leukemia and to have an inhibitory effect on the growth of normal granulomonocytic (GM) progenitors (leukemia-inhibitory activity) during the S phase of the cell cycle. AIF is also produced by normal mature cells of the monocyte-macrophage lineage. We studied the effects of AIF on the differentiation of normal GM progenitors and found an increase in the number of mature cells in AIF-exposed cultures. This increase did not occur when AIF was pretreated with anti-heart ferritin antiserum or when basic isoferritin was used in the place of AIF. The influence of AIF was not mimicked by removing S phase cells by pretreatment with a pulse of high specific activity tritiated thymidine. Thus, the apparent differentiation-stimulating effect of AIF is not likely to be due to selective removal of immature dividing cells. The results suggest that AIF-inhibitory activity on the proliferation of GM progenitors might at least in part be mediated by a stimulus for differentiation of the target cells, thus regulating the number of mature cells which might be formed by a single progenitor cell.