Binding of Glu-plasminogen (the native, circulating form of the zymogen) to cells results in enhancement of its activation. Cell-associated plasmin proteolytic activity is a key component of physiologic and pathologic processes requiring extracellular matrix degradation. Recently, we developed antiplasminogen mAbs that recognize receptor-induced binding sites (RIBS) in Glu-plasminogen and, therefore, preferentially react with cell-associated Glu-plasminogen in the presence of soluble Glu-plasminogen. Here we have used FACS with a representative antiplasminogen receptor-induced binding site mAb, mAb49, to examine whether plasminogen associates with peripheral blood cells in blood. Plasminogen binding to neutrophils, monocytes, B-lymphocytes, T-lymphocytes, and platelets was clearly detected. Treatment of whole blood with lipopolysaccharide or 12-0 tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate up-regulated plasminogen binding to neutrophils and in vivo treatment with all-trans retinoic acid decreased plasminogen binding to acute promyelocytic leukemia blasts. Our results demonstrate that mAb49 can be used to monitor cell-bound plasminogen in blood under both normal and pathologic conditions.