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Glycoconj J. 2012 Apr;29(2-3):93-105. doi: 10.1007/s10719-011-9367-9. Epub 2012 Jan 14.

One-step immunopurification and lectinochemical characterization of the Duffy atypical chemokine receptor from human erythrocytes.

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Department of Immunochemistry, Ludwik Hirszfeld Institute of Immunology and Experimental Therapy, Polish Academy of Sciences, R. Weigla 12, 53-114, Wrocław, Poland.


Duffy antigen/receptor for chemokines (DARC) is a glycosylated seven-transmembrane protein acting as a blood group antigen, a chemokine binding protein and a receptor for Plasmodium vivax malaria parasite. It is present on erythrocytes and endothelial cells of postcapillary venules. The N-terminal extracellular domain of the Duffy glycoprotein carries Fy(a)/Fy(b) blood group antigens and Fy6 linear epitope recognized by monoclonal antibodies. Previously, we have shown that recombinant Duffy protein expressed in K562 cells has three N-linked oligosaccharide chains, which are mainly of complex-type. Here we report a one-step purification method of Duffy protein from human erythrocytes. DARC was extracted from erythrocyte membranes in the presence of 1% n-dodecyl-β-D-maltoside (DDM) and 0.05% cholesteryl hemisuccinate (CHS) and purified by affinity chromatography using immobilized anti-Fy6 2C3 mouse monoclonal antibody. Duffy glycoprotein was eluted from the column with synthetic DFEDVWN peptide containing epitope for 2C3 monoclonal antibody. In this single-step immunoaffinity purification method we obtained highly purified DARC, which migrates in SDS-polyacrylamide gel as a major diffuse band corresponding to a molecular mass of 40-47 kDa. In ELISA purified Duffy glycoprotein binds anti-Duffy antibodies recognizing epitopes located on distinct regions of the molecule. Results of circular dichroism measurement indicate that purified DARC has a high content of α-helical secondary structure typical for chemokine receptors. Analysis of DARC glycans performed by means of lectin blotting and glycosidase digestion suggests that native Duffy N-glycans are mostly triantennary complex-type, terminated with α2-3- and α2-6-linked sialic acid residues with bisecting GlcNAc and α1-6-linked fucose at the core.

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