BACKGROUND: Human influenza viruses are known to bind to sialic acid linked alpha2-6 to galactose, but the binding specificity beyond that linkage has not been systematically examined. H3N2 human influenza isolates lost binding to chicken red cells in the 1990s but viruses isolated since 2003 have re-acquired the ability to agglutinate chicken erythrocytes. We have investigated specificity of binding, changes in hemagglutinin sequence of the recent viruses and the role of sialic acid in productive infection.
RESULTS: Viruses that agglutinate, or do not agglutinate, chicken red cells show identical binding to a Glycan Array of 264 oligosaccharides, binding exclusively to a subset of alpha2-6-sialylsaccharides. We identified an amino acid change in hemagglutinin that seemed to correlate with chicken red cell binding but when tested by mutagenesis there was no effect. Recombinant hemagglutinins expressed on Sf-9 cells bound chicken red cells but the released recombinant baculoviruses agglutinated only human red cells. Similarly, an isolate that does not agglutinate chicken red cells show hemadsorption of chicken red cells to infected MDCK cells. We suggest that binding of chicken red cells to cell surface hemagglutinin but not to virions is due to a more favorable hemagglutinin density on the cell surface. We investigated whether a virus specific for alpha2-6 sialyloligosaccharides shows differential entry into cells that have varying proportions of alpha2-6 and alpha2-3 sialic acids, including human A549 and HeLa cells with high levels of alpha2-6 sialic acid, and CHO cells that have only alpha2-3 sialic acid. We found that the virus enters all cell types tested and synthesizes viral nucleoprotein, localized in the nucleus, and hemagglutinin, transported to the cell surface, but infectious progeny viruses were released only from MDCK cells.
CONCLUSION: Agglutination of chicken red cells does not correlate with altered binding to any oligosaccharide on the Glycan Array, and may result from increased avidity due to density of hemagglutinin and not increased affinity. Absence of alpha2-6 sialic acid does not protect a cell from influenza infection and the presence of high levels of alpha2-6-sialic acids on a cell surface does not guarantee productive replication of a virus with alpha2-6 receptor specificity.
Previous observations that in vitro adherence of Biomphalaria glabrata embryonic (Bge) cells to sporocyst larval stages of Schistosoma mansoni was strongly inhibited by fucoidan, a sulfated polymer of L-fucose, suggested a role for lectinlike Bge cell receptors in sporocyst binding interactions. In the present investigation, monoclonal antibodies with specificities to 3 major glycan determinants found on schistosomes, LacdiNAc, fucosylated LacdiNAc (LDNF), and the Lewis X antigen, were used in adhesion blocking studies to further analyze the molecular interactions at the host-parasite interface. Results showed that only the anti-LDNF antibody significantly reduced snail Bge cell adhesion to the surface of sporocysts, suggesting that fucosyl determinants may be important in larval-host cell interactions. Affinity chromatographic separation of fucosyl-reactive Bge cell proteins from fucoidan-bound Sepharose 4B revealed the presence of polypeptides ranging from 6 to 200 kDa after elution with fucoidan-containing buffer. Pre-elution of the Bge protein-bound affinity column with dextran (Dex) and dextran sulfate (DexS) before introduction of the fucoidan buffer served as controls for protein binding based on nonspecific sugar or negative charge interactions. A subset of polypeptides (approximately 35-150 kDa) released by fucoidan elution was identified as Bge surface membrane proteins, representing putative fucosyl-binding proteins. Far-western blot analysis also demonstrated binding reactivity between Bge cell and sporocyst tegumental proteins. The finding that several of these parasite-binding Bge cell proteins were also fucoidan-reactive suggests the possible involvement of these molecules in mediating cellular interactions with sporocyst tegumental carbohydrates. It is concluded that Bge cells have surface protein(s) that may be playing a role in facilitating host cell adhesion to the surface of schistosome primary sporocysts through larval fucosylated glycoconjugates.
Infections of humans and animals by parasitic helminths share key features with atopic diseases, such as allergic asthma. Both diseases lead to the induction of high levels of Th2- type cytokines associated with abundant IgE production and eosinophilia. This immunological association has raised strong interest in the nature of the molecules that promote Th2 and regulatory T cell responses, and the molecular mechanism. Complex carbohydrates are potent inducers of Th2 responses, and carbohydrate antigens (Ags) can stimulate the production of different classes of glycan-specific antibodies (Abs), including Th2 associated IgG but also non-specific IgE. In this review we focus on the immunological responses towards glycan Ags derived from allergens and parasitic helminths, especially schistosomes. Biological effects of carbohydrate Ags are dependent on recognition of these Ags by carbohydrate- binding proteins (lectins). Cell-surface C-type lectin receptors (CLRs), such as DCSIGN, L-SIGN, the mannose receptor, macrophage galactose binding lectin, and other lectins, such as the soluble collectins and galectin-3, recognize particular glycan Ags of schistosomes and allergens, which may contribute to orchestrate Th2 associated adaptive responses. Remarkably, schistosomes express 'self glycan' Ags that are recognized by CLRs on DCs, whose principal function is thought to capture self-glycan Ags and generate regulatory T-cells to induce tolerance to these Ags. By expressing such self-glycan Ags, schistosomes may deceive the host immune system to their own benefit. The host protects itself against too much damage by down-regulating helminth-induced Th2 immune responses, and may thus simultaneously be protected against excessive Th2 cell-mediated allergic responses.
Anaplasma phagocytophilum, the aetiologic agent of human granulocytic anaplasmosis, is an obligate intracellular bacterium that colonizes neutrophils and neutrophil precursors. The granulocytotropic bacterium uses multiple adhesins that cooperatively bind to the N-terminal region of P-selectin glycoprotein ligand-1 (PSGL-1) and to sialyl Lewis x (sLe(x)) expressed on myeloid cell surfaces. Recognition of sLe(x) occurs through interactions with alpha2,3-sialic acid and alpha1,3-fucose. It is unknown whether other bacteria-host cell interactions are involved. In this study, we have enriched for A. phagocytophilum organisms that do not rely on sialic acid for cellular adhesion and entry by maintaining strain NCH-1 in HL-60 cells that are severely undersialylated. The selected bacteria, termed NCH-1A, also exhibit lessened dependencies on PSGL-1 and alpha1,3-fucose. Optimal adhesion and invasion by NCH-1A require interactions with the known determinants (sialic acid, PSGL-1 and alpha1,3-fucose), but none of them is absolutely necessary. NCH-1A binding to sLe(x)-modified PSGL-1 requires recognition of the known determinants in the same manners as other A. phagocytophilum strains. These data suggest that A. phagocytophilum expresses a separate adhesin from those targeting sialic acid, alpha1,3-fucose and the N-terminal region of PSGL-1. We propose that NCH-1A upregulates expression of this adhesin.
The common O-glycan core structure in animal glycoproteins is the core 1 disaccharide Galbeta1-3GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr, which is generated by the addition of Gal to GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr by core 1 UDP-alpha-galactose (UDP-Gal):GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr beta1,3-galactosyltransferase (core 1 beta3-Gal-T or T-synthase, EC188.8.131.52). Although O-glycans play important roles in vertebrates, much remains to be learned from model organisms such as the free-living nematode Caenorhabditis elegans, which offer many advantages in exploring O-glycan structure/function. Here, we report the cloning and enzymatic characterization of T-synthase from C. elegans (Ce-T-synthase). A putative C. elegans gene for T-synthase, C38H2.2, was identified in GenBank by a BlastP search using the human T-synthase protein sequence. The full-length cDNA for Ce-T-synthase, which was generated by polymerase chain reaction using a C. elegans cDNA library as the template, contains 1170 bp including the stop TAA. The cDNA encodes a protein of 389 amino acids with typical type II membrane topology and a remarkable 42.7% identity to the human T-synthase. Ce-T-synthase has seven Cys residues in the lumenal domain including six conserved Cys residues in all orthologs. The Ce-T-synthase has four potential N-glycosylation sequons, whereas the mammalian orthologs lack N-glycosylation sequons. Only one gene for Ce-T-synthase was identified in the genome-wide search, and it contains eight exons. Promoter analysis of the Ce-T-synthase using green fluorescent protein (GFP) constructs shows that the gene is expressed at all developmental stages and appears to be in all cells. Unexpectedly, only minimal activity was recovered in the recombinant, soluble Ce-T-synthase secreted from a wide variety of mammalian cell lines, whereas robust enzyme activity was recovered in the soluble Ce-T-synthase expressed in Hi-5 insect cells. Vertebrate T-synthase requires the molecular chaperone Cosmc, but our results show that Ce-T-synthase does not require Cosmc and might require invertebrate-specific factors for the formation of the optimally active enzyme. These results show that the Ce-T-synthase is a functional ortholog to the human T-synthase in generating core 1 O-glycans and open new avenues to explore O-glycan function in this model organism.
Glycan-binding proteins (lectins) are widely expressed in many invertebrates, although the biosynthesis and functions of the lectins are not well understood. Here we report that Manila clam (Ruditapes philippinarum) synthesizes a lectin termed Manila clam lectin (MCL) upon infection with the protozoan parasite Perkinsus olseni. MCL is synthesized in hemocytes as a approximately 74-kDa precursor and secreted into hemolymph where it is converted to 30- and 34-kDa polypeptides. The synthesis of MCL in hemocytes is stimulated by one or more factors in Perkinsus-infected hemolymph, but not directly by Perkinsus itself. MCL can bind to the surfaces of purified hypnospores and zoospores of the parasite, and this binding is inhibitable by either EDTA or GalNAc. Fluorescent beads coated with purified MCL were actively phagocytosed by hemocytes from the clam. Immunohistochemistry showed that secreted MCL is concentrated within cyst-like structures. To define the glycan binding specificity of MCL we examined its binding to an array of biotinylated glycans. MCL recognizes terminal non-reducing beta-linked GalNAc as expressed within the LacdiNAc motif GalNAcbeta1-4GlcNAcbeta1-R and glycans with terminal, non-reducing beta-linked Gal residues. Our results show that the synthesis of MCL is specifically up-regulated upon parasite infection of the clams and may serve as an opsonin through recognition of terminal GalNAc/Gal residues on the parasites.
Galectin-4 and its homologue galectin-6 are members of the tandem-repeat subfamily of monomer divalent galectins. Expression of mouse galectin-4 and galectin-6 by RT-PCR using primers designed to distinguish both galectin transcripts indicates that both are expressed in the small intestine, colon, liver, kidney, spleen and heart and P19X1 cells while only galectin-4 is expressed in BW-5147 and 3T3 cell lines. In situ hybridization confirmed the presence of galectin-4/-6 transcripts in the liver and small intestine. Galectin-4 is expressed in spermatozoons and oocytes and its expression during early mouse emryogenesis appears in 8-cell embryos and remains in later stages, as tested by RT-PCR. To study the role of carbohydrate recognition domains (CRDs) in oligosaccharide binding and epitope recognition, we cloned mouse full-length galectin-4 and galectin-6 cDNA and constructed bacterial expression vectors producing histidin-tagged recombinant galectin-4 and its truncated CRD1 and CRD2 forms. Oligosaccharide binding profile for all recombinant forms was assessed using Glycan Array available through the Consortium for Functional Glycomics. Acquired data indicate that mGalectin-4 binds to alpha-GalNAc and alpha-Gal A and B type structures with or without fucose. While the CRD2 domain has a high specificity and affinity for A type-2 alpha-GalNAc structures, the CRD1 domain has a broader specificity in correlation to the total binding profile. These data suggest that CRD2 might be the dominant binding domain of mouse galectin-4. Mapping of epitopes reactive for biotinylated his-tagged CRD1, CRD2 and mGalectin-4 performed on mouse cryosections showed that all three forms bind to alveolar macrophages, macrophages of red pulp of the spleen and proximal tubuli of the kidney and this binding was inhibited by 5 mM lactose. Interestingly, mGalectin-4, but not CRD forms, binds to the suprabasal layer of squamous epithelium of the tongue, suggesting that the link region also plays an important role in ligand recognition.
Contrast-enhanced ultrasound imaging has shown promise in the field of molecular imaging. This technique relies upon the adhesion of ultrasound contrast agent (UCA) to targeted molecular markers of disease. This is accomplished by coating the surface of the contrast agent with a ligand that specifically binds to the intended molecular marker. Most UCA particles remain in the blood space, and their retention is influenced by the forces imposed by blood flow. For a UCA bound to a molecular target on the vascular endothelium, blood flow imposes a dislodging force that counteracts retention. Additionally, contrast agent adhesion to the molecular marker requires rapid binding kinetics, especially in rapid blood flow. The ability of a ligand:target bond complex to mediate fast adhesion and withstand dislodging force is necessary for efficient ultrasound-based molecular imaging. In the current study, we describe a flow-based adhesion assay which, combined with a novel automated tracking algorithm, enables quick determination of the ability of a targeting ligand to mediate effective contrast agent adhesion. This system was used to explore the adhesion of UCA targeted to the proinflammatory endothelial protein P-selectin via four targeting ligands, which revealed several interesting adhesive behaviors. Contrast agents targeted with glycoconjugate ligands modeled on P-selectin glycoprotein ligand 1 exhibited primarily unstable or transient adhesion, while UCA targeted with an anti-P-selectin monoclonal antibody exhibited primarily firm adhesion, although the efficiency with which these agents were recruited to the target surface was relatively low.
The dendritic cell specific C-type lectin dendritic cell specific ICAM-3 grabbing non-integrin (DC-SIGN) binds to "self" glycan ligands found on human cells and to "foreign" glycans of bacterial or parasitic pathogens. Here, we investigated the binding properties of DC-SIGN to a large array of potential ligands in a glycan array format. Our data indicate that DC-SIGN binds with K(d)<2muM to a neoglycoconjugate in which Galbeta1-4(Fucalpha1-3)GlcNAc (Le(x)) trisaccharides are expressed multivalently. A lower selective binding was observed to oligomannose-type N-glycans, diantennary N-glycans expressing Le(x) and GalNAcbeta1-4(Fucalpha1-3)GlcNAc (LacdiNAc-fucose), whereas no binding was observed to N-glycans expressing core-fucose linked either alpha1-6 or alpha1-3 to the Asn-linked GlcNAc of N-glycans. These results demonstrate that DC-SIGN is selective in its recognition of specific types of fucosylated glycans and subsets of oligomannose- and complex-type N-glycans.
Cystic fibrosis (CF) is the most lethal genetic disorder in Caucasians and is characterized by the production of excessive amounts of viscous mucus secretions in the airways of patients, leading to airway obstruction, chronic bacterial infections, and respiratory failure. Previous studies indicate that CF-derived airway mucins are glycosylated and sulfated differently compared with mucins from nondiseased (ND) individuals. To address unresolved questions about mucin glycosylation and sulfation, we examined O-glycan structures in mucins purified from mucus secretions of two CF donors versus two ND donors. All mucins contained galactose (Gal), N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc), N-acetylgalactosamine (GalNAc), fucose (Fuc), and sialic acid (Neu5Ac). However, CF mucins had higher sugar content and more O-glycans compared with ND mucins. Both ND and CF mucins contained GlcNAc-6-sulfate (GlcNAc-6-Sul), Gal-6-Sul, and Gal-3-Sul, but CF mucins had higher amounts of the 6-sulfated species. O-glycans were released from CF and ND mucins and derivatized with 2-aminobenzamide (2-AB), separated by ion exchange chromatography, and quantified by fluorescence. There was nearly a two-fold increase in sulfation and sialylation in CF compared with ND mucin. High performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) profiles of glycans showed differences between the two CF samples compared with the two ND samples. Glycan compositions were defined by matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF-MS). Unexpectedly, 260 compositional types of O-glycans were identified, and CF mucins contained a higher proportion of sialylated and sulfated O-glycans compared with ND mucins. These profound structural differences in mucin glycosylation in CF patients may contribute to inflammatory responses and increased pathogenesis by Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
Apoptotic cells redistribute phosphatidylserine (PS) to the cell surface by both Ca(2+)-dependent and -independent mechanisms. Binding of dimeric galectin-1 (dGal-1) to glycoconjugates on N-formyl-Met-Leu-Phe (fMLP)-activated neutrophils exposes PS and facilitates neutrophil phagocytosis by macrophages, yet it does not initiate apoptosis. We asked whether dGal-1 initiated Ca(2+) fluxes that are required to redistribute PS to the surface of activated neutrophils. Prolonged occupancy by dGal-1 was required to maximally mobilize PS to the surfaces of fMLP-activated neutrophils. Like fMLP, dGal-1 rapidly elevated cytosolic Ca(2+) levels in Fluo-4-loaded neutrophils. An initial Ca(2+) mobilization from intracellular stores was followed by movement of extracellular Ca(2+) to the cytosolic compartment, with return to basal Ca(2+) levels within 10 min. Chelation of extracellular Ca(2+) did not prevent PS mobilization. Chelation of intracellular Ca(2+) revealed that fMLP and dGal-1 independently release Ca(2+) from intracellular stores that cooperate to induce optimal redistribution of PS. Ca(2+) mobilization by ionomycin did not permit dGal-1 to mobilize PS, indicating that fMLP initiated both Ca(2+)-dependent and -independent signals that facilitated dGal-1-induced exposure of PS. dGal-1 elevated cytosolic Ca(2+) and mobilized PS through a pathway that required action of Src kinases and phospholipase Cgamma. These results demonstrate that transient Ca(2+) fluxes contribute to a sustained redistribution of PS on neutrophils activated with fMLP and dGal-1.
Galectin-1 is a member of the galectin family of glycan-binding proteins and occurs as an approximately 29.5-kDa noncovalent homodimer (dGal-1) that is widely expressed in many tissues. Here, we report that human recombinant dGal-1 bound preferentially and with high affinity (apparent K(d) approximately 2-4 microM) to immobilized extended glycans containing terminal N-acetyllactosamine (LN; Galbeta1-4GlcNAc) sequences on poly-N-acetyllactosamine (PL; (-3Galbeta1-4GlcNAcbeta1-)(n)) sequences, complex-type biantennary N-glycans, or novel chitin-derived glycans modified to contain terminal LN. Although terminal Gal residues are important for dGal-1 recognition, dGal-1 bound similarly to alpha3-sialylated and alpha2-fucosylated terminal LN, but not to alpha6-sialylated and alpha3-fucosylated terminal LN. The binding specificity of human recombinant dGal-1 was similar to that observed with purified bovine heart-derived dGal-1. Unexpectedly, dGal-1 bound free ligands in solution with relatively low affinity and displayed no preference for extended glycans, indicating that dGal-1 preferentially recognizes extended glycans only when they are surface-bound, such as found on cell surfaces. Human dGal-1 also bound to both native and desialylated human promyelocytic HL-60 cells with similar affinity as observed for immobilized long chain PL. Binding to these cells was reduced upon treatment with endo-beta-galactosidase, which cleaves PL sequences, indicating that cell-surface PLs are ligands. To test the role of dimerization in dGal-1 binding, we examined the binding of a mutated form of dGal-1 that weakly dimerizes (monomeric Gal-1 (mGal-1)) and a covalently dimerized (chemically cross-linked) form of mGal-1 (cd-mGal-1). dGal-1 and cd-mGal-1 had similar affinities that were both approximately 3.5-fold higher for immobilized PL than observed for mGal-1, suggesting that dGal-1 acts as a dimer to cross-link terminal LN units on immobilized PL. These results indicate that dGal-1 functions as a dimer to recognize LN units on extended PLs on cell surfaces.
Glycans containing the GalNAcbeta1-4GlcNAc (LacdiNAc or LDN) motif are expressed by many invertebrates, but this motif also occurs in vertebrates and is found on several mammalian glycoprotein hormones. This motif contrasts with the more commonly occurring Galbeta1-4GlcNAc (LacNAc or LN) motif. To better understand LDN biosynthesis and regulation, we stably expressed the cDNA encoding the Caenorhabditis elegans beta1,4-N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase (GalNAcT), which generates LDN in vitro, in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) Lec8 cells, to establish L8-GalNAcT CHO cells. The glycan structures from these cells were determined by mass spectrometry and linkage analysis. The L8-GalNAcT cell line produces complex-type N-glycans quantitatively bearing LDN structures on their antennae. Unexpectedly, most of these complex-type N-glycans contain novel "poly-LDN" structures consisting of repeating LDN motifs (-3GalNAcbeta1-4GlcNAcbeta1-)n. These novel structures are in contrast to the well known poly-LN structures consisting of repeating LN motifs (-3Galbeta1-4GlcNAcbeta1-)n. We also stably expressed human alpha1,3-fucosyltransferase IX in the L8-GalNAcT cells to establish a new cell line, L8-GalNAcT-FucT. These cells produce complex-type N-glycans with alpha1,3-fucosylated LDN (LDNF) GalNAcbeta1-4(Fucalpha1-3)GlcNAcbeta1-R as well as novel "poly-LDNF" structures (-3GalNAcbeta1-4(Fucalpha 1-3)GlcNAcbeta1-)n. The ability of these cell lines to generate glycoprotein hormones with LDN-containing N-glycans was studied by expressing a recombinant form of the common alpha-subunit in L8-GalNAcT cells. The alpha-subunit N-glycans carried LDN structures, which were further modified by co-expression of the human GalNAc 4-sulfotransferase I, which generates SO4-4GalNAcbeta1-4GlcNAc-R. Thus, the generation of these stable mammalian cells will facilitate future studies on the biological activities and properties of LDN-related structures in glycoproteins.
Tn syndrome is a rare autoimmune disease in which subpopulations of blood cells in all lineages carry an incompletely glycosylated membrane glycoprotein, known as the Tn antigen. This truncated antigen has the sugar N-acetylgalactosamine alpha-linked to either a serine or threonine amino-acid residue, whereas the correct T antigen has an additional terminal galactose; the defect may be due to a malfunction of the glycosylating enzyme T-synthase. Here we show that Tn syndrome is associated with a somatic mutation in Cosmc, a gene on the X chromosome that encodes a molecular 'chaperone' that is required for the proper folding and hence full activity of T-synthase. The production of the autoimmune Tn antigen by a glycosyltransferase enzyme rendered defective by a disabled chaperone may have implications for other Tn-related disorders such as IgA nephropathy, a condition that can result in renal failure.
The new field of functional glycomics encompasses information about both glycan structure and recognition by carbohydrate-binding proteins (CBPs) and is now being explored through glycan array technology. Glycan array construction, however, is limited by the complexity of efficiently generating derivatives of free, reducing glycans with primary amines for conjugation. Here we describe a straightforward method to derivatize glycans with 2,6-diaminopyridine (DAP) to generate fluorescently labeled glycans (glycan-DAP conjugates or GDAPs) that contain a primary amine for further conjugation. We converted a wide variety of glycans, including milk sugars, N-glycans, glycosaminoglycans and chitin-derived glycans, to GDAPs, as verified by HPLC and mass spectrometry. We covalently conjugated GDAPs to N-hydroxysuccinimide (NHS)-activated glass slides, maleimide-activated protein, carboxylated microspheres and NHS-biotin to provide quantifiable fluorescent derivatives. All types of conjugated glycans were well-recognized by appropriate CBPs. Thus, GDAP derivatives provide versatile new tools for biologists to quantify and covalently capture minute quantities of glycans for exploring their structures and functions and generating new glycan arrays from naturally occurring glycans.
The core 1 beta1-3-galactosyltransferase (T-synthase) transfers Gal from UDP-Gal to GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr (Tn antigen) to form the core 1 O-glycan Galbeta1-3GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr (T antigen). The T antigen is a precursor for extended and branched O-glycans of largely unknown function. We found that wild-type mice expressed the NeuAcalpha2-3Galbeta1-3GalNAcalpha1-Ser/Thr primarily in endothelial, hematopoietic, and epithelial cells during development. Gene-targeted mice lacking T-synthase instead expressed the nonsialylated Tn antigen in these cells and developed brain hemorrhage that was uniformly fatal by embryonic day 14. T-synthase-deficient brains formed a chaotic microvascular network with distorted capillary lumens and defective association of endothelial cells with pericytes and extracellular matrix. These data reveal an unexpected requirement for core 1-derived O-glycans during angiogenesis.
Human galectin-1 is a dimeric carbohydrate binding protein (Gal-1) (subunit 14.6 kDa) widely expressed by many cells but whose carbohydrate binding specificity is not well understood. Because of conflicting evidence regarding the ability of human Gal-1 to recognize N-acetyllactosamine (LN, Galbeta4GlcNAc) and poly-N-acetyllactosamine sequences (PL, [-3Galbeta4GlcNAcbeta1-]n), we synthesized a number of neoglycoproteins containing galactose, N-acetylgalactosamine, fucose, LN, PL, and chimeric polysaccharides conjugated to bovine serum albumin (BSA). All neoglycoproteins were characterized by MALDI-TOF. Binding was determined in ELISA-type assays with immobilized neoglycoproteins and apparent binding affinities were estimated. For comparison, we also tested the binding of these neoglycoconjugates to Ricinus communis agglutinin I, (RCA-I, a galactose-binding lectin) and Lycopersicon esculentum agglutinin (LEA, or tomato lectin), a PL-binding lectin. Gal-1 bound to immobilized Galbeta4GlcNAcbeta3Galbeta4Glc-BSA with an apparent K(d) of approximately 23 micro M but bound better to BSA conjugates with long PL and chimeric polysaccharide sequences (K(d)'s ranging from 11.9 +/- 2.9 microM to 20.9 +/- 5.1 micro M). By contrast, Gal-1 did not bind glycans lacking a terminal, nonreducing unmodified LN disaccharide and also bound very poorly to lactosyl-BSA (Galbeta4Glc-BSA). By contrast, RCA bound well to all glycans containing terminal, nonreducing Galbeta1-R, including lactosyl-BSA, and bound independently of the modification of the terminal, nonreducing LN or the presence of PL. LEA bound with increasing affinity to unmodified PL in proportion to chain length. Thus Gal-1 binds terminal beta4Gal residues, and its binding affinity is enhanced significantly by the presence of this determinant on long-chain PL or chimeric polysaccharides.
Infections by parasitic protozoans and helminths are a major world-wide health concern, but no vaccines exist to the major human parasitic diseases, such as malaria, African trypanosomiasis, amebiasis, leishmaniasis, schistosomiasis, and lymphatic filariasis. Recent studies on a number of parasites indicate that immune responses to parasites in infected animals and humans are directed to glycan determinants within cell surface and secreted glycoconjugates and that glycoconjugates are important in host-parasite interactions. Because of the tremendous success achieved recently in generating carbohydrate-protein conjugate vaccines toward microbial infections, such as Haemophilus influenzae type b, there is renewed interest in defining parasite-derived glycans in the prospect of developing conjugate vaccines and new diagnostics for parasitic infections. Parasite-derived glycans are compelling vaccine targets because they have structural features that distinguish them from mammalian glycans. There have been exciting new developments in techniques for glycan analysis and the methods for synthesizing oligosaccharides by chemical or combined chemo-enzymatic approaches that now make it feasible to generate parasite glycans to test as vaccine candidates. Here, we highlight recent progress made in elucidating the immunogenicity of glycans from some of the major human and animal parasites, the potential for developing conjugate vaccines for parasitic infections, and the possible utilization of these novel glycans in diagnostics.
Although Gal beta 1-4GlcNAc (LacNAc) moieties are the most common constituents of N-linked glycans on vertebrate proteins, GalNAc beta 1-4GlcNAc (LacdiNAc, LDN)-containing glycans are widespread in invertebrates, such as helminths. We postulated that LDN might be a molecular pattern for recognition of helminth parasites by the immune system. Using LDN-based affinity chromatography and mass spectrometry, we have identified galectin-3 as the major LDN-binding protein in macrophages. By contrast, LDN binding was not observed with galectin-1. Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) analysis and a solid phase binding assay demonstrated that galectin-3 binds directly to neoglycoconjugates carrying LDN glycans. In addition, galectin-3 bound to Schistosoma mansoni soluble egg Ags and a mAb against the LDN glycan inhibited this binding, suggesting that LDN glycans within S. mansoni soluble egg Ags contribute to galectin-3 binding. Immunocytochemistry demonstrated high levels of galectin-3 in liver granulomas of S. mansoni-infected hamsters, and a colocalization of galectin-3 and LDN glycans was observed on the parasite eggshells. Finally, we demonstrate that galectin-3 can mediate recognition and phagocytosis of LDN-coated particles by macrophages. These findings provide evidence that LDN-glycans constitute a parasite pattern for galectin-3-mediated immune recognition.
Intercellular adhesion molecule-1 (ICAM-1) occurs as both a membrane and a soluble, secreted glycoprotein (sICAM-1). ICAM-1 on endothelial cells mediates leukocyte adhesion by binding to leukocyte function associated antigen-1 (LFA-1) and macrophage antigen-1 (Mac-1). Recombinant mouse sICAM-1 induces the production of macrophage inflammatory protein-2 (MIP-2) in mouse astrocytes by a novel LFA-1- and Mac-1-independent mechanism. Here we showed that N-glycan structures of sICAM-1 influence its ability to induce MIP-2 production. sICAM-1 expressed in Chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells was a more potent inducer of MIP-2 production than sICAM-1 expressed in HEK 293 cells, suggesting that posttranslational modification of sICAM-1 could influence its signaling activity. To explore the roles of glycosylation in sICAM-1 activity, we expressed sICAM-1 in mutant CHO cell lines differing in glycosylation, including Lec2, Lec8, and Lec1 as well as in CHO cells cultured in the presence of the alpha-mannosidase-I inhibitor kifunensine. Signaling activity of sICAM-1 lacking sialic acid was reduced 3-fold compared with sICAM-1 from CHO cells. The activity of sICAM-1 lacking both sialic acid and galactose was reduced 12-fold, whereas the activity of sICAM-1 carrying only high mannose-type N-glycans was reduced 12-26-fold. sICAM-1 glycoforms carrying truncated glycans retained full ability to bind to LFA-1 on leukocytes. Thus, sialylated and galactosylated complex-type N-glycans strongly enhanced the ability of sICAM-1 to induce MIP-2 production in astrocytes but did not alter its binding to LFA-1 on leukocytes. Glycosylation could therefore serve as a means to regulate specifically the signaling function of sICAM-1 in vivo.