SUMMARY: -tolyl-α-naphthylamine-8-sulphonic acid forms conjugates with protein which fluoresce when excited by ultraviolet light. When washed cell suspensions of are treated with -tolyl-α-naphthylamine-8-sulphonic acid no fluorescence develops, but when polymyxin is also added, fluorescence develops, thus demonstrating that the dye can penetrate to proteincontaining portions of the cells. This technique has been used to study the competition between polymyxin and certain cations for sites on the cells. From a comparison of the affinities of these cations for the polymyxin-combining groups of the cells with their ability to reverse the charge on certain colloids it is suggested that the polymyxin-combining loci of the cells may be polyphosphates.


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