A Sensitive and Versatile Cytokine Bioassay Based on Type I Interferon Signaling in 2fTGH Cells
We have designed a sensitive and versatile bioassay for quantification of series of cytokines. The assay makes use of chimeric receptors composed of the extracellular, ligand-binding part of the cognate cytokine receptor and the transmembrane and cytosolic part of the type I interferon receptor. Receptors can be homo- (e.g. erythropoietin), di- (e.g. interleukin-5), or even trimeric (e.g. interleukin-2). Stable expression of these chimeras in the 2fTGH cell line allows an interferon-type signaling, which makes a positive selection in conditioned medium possible or a negative selection using a toxic guanine analog. The cytokine of interest is quantified by the extent of cell survival or cell toxicity respectively, which can be measured by easy and cheap crystal violet staining. This bioassay is sensitive in the lower picogram per milliliter range and, in contrast to ELISA methods, only measures the concentration of biologically active cytokines. Using this approach, hypersensitive 2fTGH cell lines have been developed for type I and II interferons, erythropoietin, interleukin-2, and interleukin-5.
Key wordsBioassay Chimeric receptors Interferon 2fTGH 6-Thioguanine Toxicity
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