GSBS Student Publications


Calcium gradients underlying polarization and chemotaxis of eosinophils

GSBS Program

Biochemistry & Molecular Pharmacology

UMMS Affiliation

Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences; Department of Physiology



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Calcium; *Chemotaxis, Leukocyte; Eosinophils; Fura-2; Humans; Ionomycin; Microscopy, Fluorescence; Microscopy, Phase-Contrast


Life Sciences | Medicine and Health Sciences


The concentration of intracellular free calcium ([Ca2+]i) in polarized eosinophils was imaged during chemotaxis by monitoring fluorescence of the calcium-sensitive dye Fura-2 with a modified digital imaging microscope. Chemotactic stimuli caused [Ca2+]i to increase in a nonuniform manner that was related to cell activity. In cells moving persistently in one direction, [Ca2+]i was highest at the rear and lowest at the front of the cell. Before cells turned, [Ca2+]i transiently increased. The region of the cell that became the new leading edge had the lowest [Ca2+]i. These changes in [Ca2+]i provide a basis for understanding the organization and local activity of cytoskeletal proteins thought to underlie the directed migration of many cells.

Rights and Permissions

Citation: Science. 1991 Nov 1;254(5032):703-6.

Related Resources

Link to article in PubMed

Journal Title

Science (New York, N.Y.)

PubMed ID