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Biotechnol Appl Biochem. 1997 Oct;26 ( Pt 2):79-83.

Characterization of the acidic oligosaccharides assembled on the Pichia pastoris-expressed recombinant kringle 2 domain of human tissue-type plasminogen activator.

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  • 1Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, University of Notre Dame, IN 46556, USA.


The N-linked glycans assembled in Pichia pastoris on the recombinant kringle 2 domain of human tissue-type plasminogen activator (r-[K2tPA]) are composed of approx. 80% neutral and 20% charged species. After peptide:N4-(N-acetyl-beta-glucosaminyl)asparaginyl amidase-catalysed liberation of the oligosaccharides from the purified glycopeptide, the glycan mixture was resolved by HPLC on amino-silica-based resin. Oligosaccharide mapping of the resulting mixture by HPLC, gel filtration and time-of-flight matrix-assisted laser-desorption-ionization-with-delayed-extraction mass spectrometry (TOF-MALDI DE-MS) revealed that > 90% of the charged species consisted of a series of oligosaccharides possessing molecular masses that were consistent with a range of saccharides comprising phospho-Man10GlcNAc2-phospho-Man14GlcNAc2, with phospho-Man11GlcNAc2 representing the major species. The remaining material in the charged fraction contained identifiable phosphorylated glycans that were one or two mannose units shorter, and one to four mannose units longer, than those present in the above range of oligosaccharides. Treatment of the native charged glycan pool with alkaline phosphatase did not result in molecular-size alterations, showing that phosphomonoesters are not present. Mild acid hydrolysis of the glycans led to a decrease in the size of all charged glycans by one mannose residue, providing phospho-Man9GlcNAc2-phospho-Man13GlcNAc2. Following this procedure, treatment with alkaline phosphatase resulted in size decreases that were equivalent to the loss of one phosphate group from each glycan. This demonstrates that all charged glycans isolated contained phosphate in phosphodiester bonds to two mannose units. The present study shows that P. pastoris cells possess the capability of assembling phosphorylated glycans having the phosphate moiety present in phosphodiester linkages with two mannose units. These saccharides, like the neutral oligosaccharides, contain considerably smaller amounts of mannose than glycans present in other strains of yeast.

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