Medical College of Wisconsin
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A lectin HPLC method to enrich selectively-glycosylated peptides from complex biological samples. J Vis Exp 2009 Oct 01(32) PMID: 19798022 PMCID: PMC2762330

Abstract

Glycans are an important class of post-translational modifications. Typically found on secreted and extracellular molecules, glycan structures signal the internal status of the cell. Glycans on tumor cells tend to have abundant sialic acid and fucose moieties. We propose that these cancer-associated glycan variants be exploited for biomarker development aimed at diagnosing early-stage disease. Accordingly, we developed a mass spectrometry-based workflow that incorporates chromatography on affinity matrices formed from lectins, proteins that bind specific glycan structures. The lectins Sambucus nigra (SNA) and Aleuria aurantia (AAL), which bind sialic acid and fucose, respectively, were covalently coupled to POROS beads (Applied Biosystems) and packed into PEEK columns for high pressure liquid chromatography (HPLC). Briefly, plasma was depleted of the fourteen most abundant proteins using a multiple affinity removal system (MARS-14; Agilent). Depleted plasma was trypsin-digested and separated into flow-through and bound fractions by SNA or AAL HPLC. The fractions were treated with PNGaseF to remove N-linked glycans, and analyzed by LC-MS/MS on a QStar Elite. Data were analyzed using Mascot software. The experimental design included positive controls-fucosylated and sialylated human lactoferrin glycopeptides-and negative controls-high mannose glycopeptides from Saccharomyces cerevisiae-that were used to monitor the specificity of lectin capture. Key features of this workflow include the reproducibility derived from the HPLC format, the positive identification of the captured and PNGaseF-treated glycopeptides from their deamidated Asn-Xxx-Ser/Thr motifs, and quality assessment using glycoprotein standards. Protocol optimization also included determining the appropriate ratio of starting material to column capacity, identifying the most efficient capture and elution buffers, and monitoring the PNGaseF-treatment to ensure full deglycosylation. Future directions include using this workflow to perform mass spectrometry-based discovery experiments on plasma from breast cancer patients and control individuals.

Author List

Johansen E, Schilling B, Lerch M, Niles RK, Liu H, Li B, Allen S, Hall SC, Witkowska HE, Regnier FE, Gibson BW, Fisher SJ, Drake PM

Author

Michael Lerch PhD Assistant Professor in the Biophysics department at Medical College of Wisconsin

MESH terms used to index this publication - Major topics in bold

Blood Proteins
Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid
Glycopeptides
Humans
Lactoferrin
Lectins
Plant Lectins
Ribosome Inactivating Proteins



View this publication's entry at the Pubmed website PMID: 19798022
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