The effect of administration of 0-2 mg of epinephrine (Parke-Davis) on circulatory lymphocytes was investigated in fifteen normal subjects. Blood samples were taken prior to, 10 and 20 min after, subcutaneous injections. Thymus-derived (T) cells were assayed by sheep red blood cell rosettes, bone marrow-derived (B) cells by their complement receptors and immunofluorescent detection of Fc receptors plus surface immunoglobulins. Their percentages prior to injections were 72-2 +/- 1-4, 13-8 +/- 1-1, and 20-3 +/- 1-3. Ten minutes after injections, the absolute concentrations of these cells increased to 164 +/- 14%, 326 +/- 57%, and 272 +/- 45% respectively of the values prior to injection (averages +/- standard errors). Further, when cells with receptors for both sheep red blood cells and complement were assayed by simultaneous rosette technique, they increased from 2-5 +/- 0-4% to 10-5 +/- 1-3% of the lymphocytes. Such changes were also observed in three subjects who had undergone splenectomy more than 2 years previously, but not in four subjects receiving injections of saline instead of epinephrine
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