RBL (Rat Basophilic Leukemia cells)  are cancerous basophil cells that are well suited for the study of allergy. They form a monolayer and are best cultured in Eagle's minimal essential medium with 10% Fetal bovine serum, 0.01 units/ml of penicillin and 0.1 mg/ml streptomycin incubated in 37°C + 5% CO2 + 90% relative humidity with a cell density of 5x105 cell per 15 ml.
RBL cells are suited for allergy studies specifically the IgE antibody and its FcεRI receptor because basophil cell are physiologically very similar to mast cells but are a much more stable cell line in tissue culture.
Mycoplasma bacterial infections greatly affects the cell mediator release for biological assays, therefore regular Mycoplasma tests need to be performed since the bacteria colonizes the cell surface and cannot be visualized through a light microscope.
- Bingham B.R., Monk P.N. and Helm B.A. (1994) Defective Protein Phosphorylation and Ca2+ Mobilization Linowa SecretingVariant of the Rat Basophilic Leukemia Cell Line. The Journal of Biological Chemistry: 269(30), pp. 19300-19306.
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