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The diversity of O-linked glycans expressed during Drosophila melanogaster development reflects stage- and tissue-specific requirements for cell signaling. J Biol Chem 2008 Oct 31;283(44):30385-400



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Pubmed Central ID




Scopus ID

2-s2.0-57149096197   112 Citations


Appropriate glycoprotein O-glycosylation is essential for normal development and tissue function in multicellular organisms. To comprehensively assess the developmental and functional impact of altered O-glycosylation, we have extensively analyzed the non-glycosaminoglycan, O-linked glycans expressed in Drosophila embryos. Through multidimensional mass spectrometric analysis of glycans released from glycoproteins by beta-elimination, we detected novel as well as previously reported O-glycans that exhibit developmentally modulated expression. The core 1 mucin-type disaccharide (Galbeta1-3GalNAc) is the predominant glycan in the total profile. HexNAcitol, hexitol, xylosylated hexitol, and branching extension of core 1 with HexNAc (to generate core 2 glycans) were also evident following release and reduction. After Galbeta1-3GalNAc, the next most prevalent glycans were a mixture of novel, isobaric, linear, and branched forms of a glucuronyl core 1 disaccharide. Other less prevalent structures were also extended with HexA, including an O-fucose glycan. Although the expected disaccharide product of the Fringe glycosyltransferase, (GlcNAcbeta1-3)fucitol, was not detectable in whole embryos, mass spectrometry fragmentation and exoglycosidase sensitivity defined a novel glucuronyl trisaccharide as GlcNAcbeta1-3(GlcAbeta1-4)fucitol. Consistent with the spatial distribution of the Fringe function, the GlcA-extended form of the Fringe product was enriched in the dorsal portion of the wing imaginal disc. Furthermore, loss of Fringe activity reduced the prevalence of the O-Fuc trisaccharide. Therefore, O-Fuc glycans necessary for the modulation of important signaling events in Drosophila are, as in vertebrates, substrates for extension beyond the addition of a single HexNAc.

Author List

Aoki K, Porterfield M, Lee SS, Dong B, Nguyen K, McGlamry KH, Tiemeyer M


Kazuhiro Aoki PhD Associate Professor in the Cell Biology, Neurobiology and Anatomy department at Medical College of Wisconsin

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

Drosophila melanogaster
Gene Expression Regulation, Developmental
Mass Spectrometry
Models, Biological
Models, Chemical
Signal Transduction
Time Factors