Saturation analysis of cellular retinoid binding proteins: Application to retinoic acid resistant human neuroblastoma cells and to human tumors

M. A. Kelly, N. Sidell, M. R. Haussler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


A method for saturation analysis of cellular retinoic acid and retinol binding proteins, CRABP and CRBP, respectively, in cultured cells and human tumor samples, and its application to a retinoic acid resistant subline of the human neuroblastoma LA-N-5 cell line is described. Assessment of retinoid binding was accomplished by incubation of cytosols with increasing concentrations of [3H]retinoid (28-43 Ci/mmol; 1 Ci = 37 GBq) for 24 h. Bound retinoid was separated from free retinoid by adsorption with dextran-coated charcoal. Nonspecific binding was quantitated in parallel incubations which had been treated with p-chloromercuribenzene sulfonate (PCMBS), resulting in selective elimination of sulfhydryl-dependent ligand binding to both CRABP and CRBP. Quantitation was accomplished by Scatchard analysis of specific (PCMBS sensitive) binding. Employing this technique, specific retinoid binding was attributed to the presence of 2S macromolecules which displayed the known properties of CRABP and CRBP, namely ligand specificity, saturability, high ligand affinity, and PCMBS sensitivity. The apparent dissociation constants (K(d)) for retinoic acid binding in cytosols prepared from murine 3T6 fibroblasts, rat testes, and a human ovarian tumor were 7, 11, and 35 nM, respectively. These preparations also bound retinol with high affinity, exhibiting K(d)S of 12, 26, and 48 nM, respectively. A retinoic acid resistant subline of LA-N-5 cells designated LA-N-5-R9 was established by long-term culture in the presence of 10-6 M retinoic acid. This subline is resistant to the effects of retinoic acid in that it requires a 10-fold higher concentration of retinoic acid for 50% inhibition of growth than the parent line and displays no retinoic acid induced morphologic differentiation. Saturation analysis of CRABP in the parent and resistant subline reveal no significant alteration in either CRABP content or affinity. These results indicate that resistance to retinoic acid induced differentiation in LA-N-5-R9 occurs distal to CRABP binding or that CRABP does not mediate this response to retinoic acid.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)163-172
Number of pages10
JournalBiochemistry and Cell Biology
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology


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