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Adv Exp Med Biol. 1986;207:293-313.

Characterization of the Strongylocentrotus purpuratus egg cell surface receptor for sperm.

Abstract

In earlier studies from our laboratory, the intact sperm receptor was partially purified from Strongylocentrotus purpuratus crude egg membranes, but due to its insolubility, it was not possible to purify it to homogeneity. Nonetheless, this receptor preparation bound with species specificity to acrosome-reacted sperm, thereby inhibiting fertilization. Antibodies against the partially pure receptor inhibited fertilization in S. purpuratus (but not Arbacia punctulata) by coating the egg surface, indicating the presence of binding sites that can be species-specifically recognized by both sperm and antibody molecules. Recently we were able to further purify and characterize the receptor from S. purpuratus eggs. Chaotropic agent solubilization of the receptor prepared from crude egg membranes yielded a very high molecular weight glycoconjugate that had many of the properties of a proteoglycan. The receptor interacted with binding in an in vitro assay and bound with species specificity to acrosome-reacted sperm to inhibit fertilization. Unfortunately, this receptor preparation was soluble only in certain chaotropic agents. Exhaustive Pronase digestion of the intact receptor yielded a soluble high-molecular-weight (greater than 10(6)) polysaccharide that was virtually devoid of protein. This glycosaminoglycan-like fragment was highly sulfated, and contained fucose, galactosamine, and iduronic acid. The fragment inhibited fertilization, but did not do so with species specificity. Recently, soluble molecules with receptor activity were generated by treating intact dejellied eggs with trypsin. These proteolytically derived molecules contained (on a weight basis) approximately equal amounts of protein and carbohydrate. Importantly, they inhibited fertilization with species specificity. The results suggested that the binding activity was conferred by the polysaccharide component of the receptor and that the intact receptor and the tryptic fragments contained structural elements in the polypeptide chain necessary for species recognition.

PMID:
3825683
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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