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Biol Reprod. 1997 Nov;57(5):1155-63.

Modifications of carbohydrate residues and ZP2 and ZP3 glycoproteins in the mouse zona pellucida after fertilization.

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Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada.


Oligosaccharide side chains of zona pellucida (ZP) glycoproteins play a key role in the sperm-egg interaction phenomena during fertilization. In the present study, modifications of the ZP glycoproteins during the fertilization process in the mouse were studied by the lectin-gold technique and immunocytochemistry in conjunction with quantitative analysis. Binding of PNA, RCA I, DSA, LFA, MAA, AAA, and anti-ZP2 and anti-ZP3 antibodies was observed throughout the ZP of both unfertilized and fertilized eggs. However, HPA and BSAIB4 labeling was found only in the inner region of the ZP. After neuraminidase treatment (Neu), HPA showed an affinity for the entire ZP. Labeling by LFA, WGA, MAA, PNA, BSAIB4, and AAA decreased in the ZP of fertilized eggs; however, there was an increase in the binding of RCA I. HPA and Neu-HPA increased only in the inner region of the ZP. Immunoreactivity to antibodies against ZP2 and ZP3 also decreased after fertilization. The present results demonstrate that 1) terminal carbohydrate residues contained in the ZP glycoproteins are modified after fertilization and 2) inner and outer regions of the ZP contain different oligosaccharide side chains.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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