Recombinant human colony stimulating factor-granulocyte/macrophage and -granulocyte, but not macrophage induce the development of a respiratory burst in primary human myeloid leukemic cells in vitro

K. Geissler, G. Tricot, G. Grimm, P. Siostrzonek, H. Broxmeyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Scopus citations


Respiratory burst develops in myeloid blast cells if they differentiate functionally along the monocytic or granulocytic lineage. Using the nitroblue tetrazolium (NBT) assay we studied the effects of recombinant human granulocyte/macrophage colony stimulating factor (rhuGM-CSF), rhuG-CSF and rhuM-CSF on development of respiratory burst activity in primary blast cells from patients with myeloid leukemia. Assessing suspension cultures containing cells from patients with acute myeloid leukemia (AML, n=13) or myeloidblast crisis (myBC) of chronic myeloid leukemia (CML, n=5) it was found that the percentage of NBT positive cells was increased by at least 20% as compared to control cultures by rhuGM-CSF in 6/17 cases, by rhuG-CSF in 7/17 cases and by rhuM-CSF in 0/16 cases, representing in 'responders' a mean increase of 267% and 270% in the absolute number of NBT positive cells by rhuGM-CSF and rhuG-CSF, respectively. Morphological examination of cultured cells from 'responders', as compared to controls, showed decreased blast cell content but generally no evidence of terminal differentiation. The demonstration of Auer rods in NBT positive cells indicates that respiratory burst developed in a leukemic clone. These findings may be of physiological, pathophysiological and clinical relevance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)226-230
Number of pages5
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 1 1989



  • Colony stimulating factors
  • Myeloid blast cells
  • Respiratory burst

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hematology

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