Expression and characterization of recombinant chicken mannose binding lectin


Zhang W, van Eijk M, Guo H, van Dijk A, Bleijerveld OB, Verheije HM, Wang G, Haagsman HP, Veldhuizen EJA. Expression and characterization of recombinant chicken mannose binding lectin. Immunobiology. 2017;222 (3) :518-528.

Date Published:

2017 03


Mannose binding lectin (MBL) is a serum collagenous C-type lectin that plays an important role in the innate immune protection against pathogens. Previously, human and mouse studies have demonstrated that MBL binds a broad range of pathogens that results in their neutralization through agglutination, enhanced phagocytosis, and/or complement activation via the lectin pathway. The role of MBL in chicken is not well understood although the MBL concentration in serum seems to correlate with protection against infections. To investigate the role of MBL in chicken further, recombinant chicken MBL (RcMBL) was produced in HeLa R19 cells and purified using mannan affinity chromatography followed by gel filtration. RcMBL was shown to be structurally and functionally similar to native chicken MBL (NcMBL) isolated from serum. RcMBL is expressed as an oligomeric protein (mixture of trimers and oligomerized trimers) with a monomeric mass of 26kDa as determined by mass spectrometry, corresponding to the predicted mass. Glycan array analysis indicated that RcMBL bound most strongly to high-mannose glycans but also glycans with terminal fucose and GlcNac residues. The biological activity of RcMBL was demonstrated via its capacity to agglutinate Salmonella Typhimurium and to inhibit the hemagglutination activity of influenza A virus. The production of a structurally well-characterized and functionally active RcMBL will facilitate detailed studies into the protective role of MBL in innate defense against pathogens in chicken and other avian species.