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Abstract

Two different types of cells in the peritoneal cavity of mice produce mast cell colonies in methylcellulose. “Large” mast cell colonies are produced by bone marrow-derived precursors resembling lymphoid cells by light microscopy (L-CFU-Mast), whereas “medium” and “small” mast cell colonies are produced by morphologically identifiable mast cells (M-CFU- Mast and S-CFU-Mast, respectively). In the present study we eradicated peritoneal mast cells by intraperitoneal (IP) injection of distilled water. The regeneration process was investigated to clarify the relationship between L-CFU-Mast, M-CFU-Mast, and S-CFU-Mast. After injection of distilled water, M-CFU-Mast and S-CFU-Mast disappeared, but L-CFU-Mast increased, and then M-CFU-Mast and S-CFU-Mast appeared, suggesting the presence of a hierarchic relationship. When purified peritoneal mast cells were injected two days after the water injection, the L-CFU-Mast did not increase. In the peritoneal cavity of WBB6F1-+/+ mice that had been lethally irradiated and rescued by bone marrow cells of C57BL/6-bgJ/bgJ (beige, Chediak-Higashi syndrome) mice, L-CFU-Mast were of bgJ/bgJ type, but M-CFU-Mast and S-CFU-Mast were of +/+ type. The injection of distilled water to the radiation chimeras resulted in the development of bgJ/bgJ-type M-CFU-Mast and then S-CFU-Mast. The presence of mast cells appeared to suppress the recruitment of L-CFU- Mast from the bloodstream and to inhibit the differentiation of L-CFU- Mast to M-CFU-Mast.