The JE gene was first described as a platelet-derived growth factor (PDGF)-inducible gene in mouse 3T3 cells. The human homologue of JE encodes a protein whose predicted amino acid sequence is identical to that of the monocyte chemoattractant MCP-1 (also called MCAF and SMC- CF), which belongs to a recently identified family of small secretory proteins with cytokine properties. We purified recombinant human MCP- 1/JE (hMCP-1/JE) produced in COS cells and demonstrated that it is chemotactic for human monocytes with a specific activity similar to natural MCP-1. In addition, pure recombinant hMCP-1/JE stimulates monocytes, inducing an increase in cytosolic free calcium and the respiratory burst, but is completely inactive on human neutrophils. These results help to define functionally a well-known growth factor- inducible gene and a member of a new family of cytokines.

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