Targeted CTA conjugates are powerful and specific stimulatory agents. These conjugates use the catalytic A subunit of cholera toxin (CTA) bound to a targeting agent (anything that is recognized on the cell surface and internalized). The targeted conjugate is administered to cells (in vitro or in vivo). The targeting agent seeks out and binds to its target on the cell surface. The conjugate is internalized, CTA activates the cAMP pathway within the cells by ribosylating adenylate cyclase. Cells that do not have the cell surface marker are not affected.
SP-CTA stimulates cells expressing the substance P receptor. All other cells are left untouched.
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