Processing of O-linked glycosylation in the chimera consisting of alpha-subunit and carboxyl-terminal peptide of the human chorionic gonadotropin beta-subunit is affected by dimer formation with follicle-stimulating hormone beta-subunit

Furuhashi, M.; Suganuma, N.

Endocrine Journal 51(1): 53-59


ISSN/ISBN: 0918-8959
PMID: 15004409
DOI: 10.1507/endocrj.51.53
Accession: 050029729

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hCG, LH, FSH, and TSH are a family of heterodimeric glycoprotein hormones that contain a common alpha-subunit, but differ in their hormone-specific beta-subunits. hCGbeta is unique among beta-subunits due to a carboxyl-terminal peptide (CTP) bearing four O-linked oligosaccharides. We previously reported that there were differences in O-glycosylation between two chimeras consisting of alpha-subunit and CTP, i.e. a variant with CTP at the N-terminal region (Calpha) and another analog with CTP at the C-terminus (alphaC) of the alpha-subunit. To address whether O-glycosylation is influenced by the heterodimer formation, Calpha and alphaC were expressed alone or with FSHbeta-subunit in Chinese hamster ovary cells. The O-linked glycosylation was assessed by continuous labeling with [(35)S]methionine/cysteine, immunoprecipitation with anti-alpha or anti-FSH serum, serial digestion with endoglycosidase-F and neuraminidase, and sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis. The decrease in molecular weight of dimeric chimeras digested with endoglycosidase-F was greater in Calpha than that in alphaC after treatment with neuraminidase, revealing that both chimeras have different numbers of sialic acids on O-linked carbohydrates. By treating with endoglycosidase-F, the dimeric alphaC migrated faster than its free form, whereas the mobility difference between assembled and unassembled forms of Calpha was very little. These data indicate that processing of O-glycosylation is affected by the backbone polypeptide chain(s).