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Eur J Biochem. 1989 Jun 1;182(1):139-52.

Structures of O-glycosidically linked oligosaccharides isolated from human meconium glycoproteins.

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Laboratoire de Chimie Biologique de l'Université des Sciences et Techniques de Lille Flandres-Artois, Villeneuve d'Ascq, France.


The structure of the major O-glycosidically linked neutral and acidic oligosaccharides isolated from human meconium glycoproteins were established. Neutral and acidic oligosaccharides were released by alkaline borohydride treatment, purified by Biogel P-6 and fractionated by high-performance liquid chromatography. This approach resulted in 50 neutral and 30 acidic oligosaccharides. The present study reports the primary structural analysis of five neutral oligosaccharides, ten monosialylated oligosaccharides, one monosialylated monosulfated oligosaccharide and three disialylated oligosaccharides, by permethylation, fast-atom-bombardment mass spectrometry analysis and 400-MHz 1H-NMR spectroscopy. The following structure have not been described previously: (formula; see text) The intestinal glycoproteins of human meconium are characterized as high molecular mass compounds with numerous carbohydrate chains of the mucin type. These mucins are a rich source of carbohydrate structures which express multiple blood group activities and occur as membrane-associated antigens, recognized by hybridoma antibodies [1-4]. A previous study [5] described the structure of fifteen free oligosaccharides derived from catabolism of O- and N-glycans accumulating in new born meconium. In the same group [6] the research has been extended to glycoasparagines with the description of thirteen of them by high resolution 1H-NMR spectroscopy analysis. From O-glycosidically linked glycoproteins, further studies [7] established the structures of nine major monosaccharides to tetrasaccharides obtained after mild acid hydrolysis and base-borohydride degradation from meconium samples of group O secretors. These oligosaccharides were derived from meconium glycopeptides which had been depleted of I- and i-antigen activities. Recently [8], neutral and acidic oligosaccharide-alditols obtained by alkaline borohydride degradation of human meconium glycoproteins have been separated by HPLC on an anion-exchange column. The neutral fraction was further purified by normal-phase and reversed-phase chromatography while acidic fractions were fractionated only by normal-phase chromatography. Thus, we have isolated several low molecular mass oligosaccharides of different size and composition and also isomers which vary in linkage position or anomer configuration. Using methylation analysis, 1H-NMR spectroscopy and fast-atom-bombardment mass spectrometry (FAB-MS), we propose the primary structure for 19 major oligosaccharides.

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