• Migration of neutrophils from blood into tissue is a complex response by circulating cells to chemotactic stimulation. Previous studies of the functional changes induced by this process have produced variable results. We compared neutrophils isolated from blood and from subcutaneous wounds in rabbits using established assays for adherence, chemotaxis, superoxide anion production, and hydrogen peroxide production. No differences in adherence to biologic surfaces or chemotaxis toward activated plasma were found. However, our results confirm the observation that wound neutrophils are "primed" for increased production of oxygen radicals. Primed responses were observed for both soluble (formyl methionyl leucylphenylalanine, phorbol myristate acetate) and particulate (opsonized zymosan) stimulants. Priming was also observed for peritoneal exudate neutrophils. The data suggest that the process of extravascular migration includes priming of the superoxide generating system.
(Arch Surg 1988;123:1509-1513)