Inhibitors of mast cell membrane activation reduced histamine release from rat mast cells induced by dextran and phosphatidyl serine but not that induced by the calcium ionophore A23187. Such inhibitors included cromoglycate, an orally-active anti-allergic agent 3-(5-tetrazolyl)thioxanthone 10,10-dioxide, dibutyryl cyclic 3′:5′-AMP, theophylline and dicumarol. Inhibitors of mast cell metabolism reduced both types of release and these included oligomycin, papavevime, and the two uncouplers of oxidative phosphorylation-α2,4-dinitrophenol and CCCP. Inhibition of histamine release from rat isolated peritoneal mast cells by either a mixture of dextran and phosphatidyl serine or the ionophore A23187 thus allows inhibitors of mast cell membrane activation to be distinguished from those affecting cell metabolism or the later stages of the secretory process.

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