We have previously characterized the stably transfected, clonally selected human placental cell line, 3ASubE P-3, which overexpresses the type B interleukin-8 receptor (IL-8RB) and responds to the chemokine melanoma growth stimulatory activity (MGSA) with enhanced phosphorylation of this receptor. In work described here, we demonstrate that the MGSA-enhanced phosphorylation of this receptor is mediated via a process involving pertussis toxin-sensitive G proteins. Furthermore, treatment of the 3ASubE P-3 cells with either 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol 13-acetate (TPA) or 1,2-dioctanoyl-sn-glycerol (diC8), two different activators of protein kinase C (PKC), results in a concentration-dependent increase in the phosphorylation of the IL-8RB. Inhibition of PKC, by treatment with staurosporin (50 nM for 2 h), or down-regulation of PKC, by prolonged treatment with TPA (400 nM for 40 h) suppresses the TPA-enhanced receptor phosphorylation, but has no effect on the MGSA-enhanced receptor phosphorylation. These data suggest that the isoforms of PKC that are sensitive to these manipulations may not play a role in mediating the MGSA-enhanced phosphorylation of the IL-8RB. TPA treatment also results in a time-dependent decrease in 125I-MGSA binding to the 3ASubE P-3 cells. A 30-min treatment with 400 nM TPA results in approximately a 50% decrease in binding, whereas a 2-h treatment essentially eliminates specific binding of 125I-MGSA to these cells. The TPA-induced decrease in 125I-MGSA binding is accompanied by enhanced degradation of the IL-8RB, as indicated by Western blot analysis and pulse-chase experiments, suggesting a potential role for PKC as a negative regulator of the IL-8RB. MGSA treatment (50 nM for 2 h) also stimulates receptor degradation in the 3ASubE P-3 cells, indicating that this receptor is down-regulated in response to prolonged exposure to its ligand. In similar studies conducted on the promonocytic cell line, U937, MGSA treatment of the U937 cells resulted in receptor phosphorylation, whereas PKC activation failed to significantly modulate the phosphorylation state of the IL-8RB. Treatment of the U937 cells with MGSA, TPA, or diC8 resulted in a loss of receptor protein present in these cell types. These data imply that MGSA signaling through the IL-8RB is similar in both the non-hematopoietic and hematopoietic cell types, whereas activation of PKC by TPA or diC8 elicits different responses in these two distinct cell types.