T cell functions are known to decline with age, but the underlying cause of the decline is unclear. Because of the importance of cytoskeletal elements in cellular functions, we examined the content and the state of polymerization of actin in lymphocytes from Fischer F344 rats of four different ages (6, 14, 23, and 31 mo). The cellular actin content was determined by a DNAase I inhibition assay. Our results indicate that the total actin content of spleen lymphocytes did not change significantly with age; however, polymeric actin content, particularly in T cells, decreased with age, which might be a result of the shift from the polymeric actin pool to the monomeric pool. Similar changes also occurred in B cells but to a lesser extent. We conclude that the state of polymerization of lymphocytes changed drastically with age, and that this might be an important factor in the age-related decline in the cellular functions of lymphocytes.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||5|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - 1987|
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy