Glycobiology and Extracellular Matrices
- The GalNAc-type O-glycoproteome is orchestrated by a large family of polypeptide GalNAc-transferase isoenzymes (GalNAc-Ts) with partially overlapping contributions to the O-glycoproteome besides distinct nonredundant functions. Increasing evidence indicates that individual GalNAc-Ts co-regulate and fine-tune specific protein functions in health and disease, and deficiencies in individual GALNT genes underlie congenital diseases with distinct phenotypes. Studies of GalNAc-T specificities have mainly been performed with in vitro enzyme assays using short peptide substrates, but recently quantitative differential O-glycoproteomics of isogenic cells with and without GALNT genes has enabled a more unbiased exploration of the nonredundant contributions of individual GalNAc-Ts.
- Proteolytic processing is an irreversible post-translational modification functioning as a ubiquitous regulator of cellular activity. Protease activity is tightly regulated via control of gene expression, enzyme and substrate compartmentalization, zymogen activation, enzyme inactivation, and substrate availability. Emerging evidence suggests that proteolysis can also be regulated by substrate glycosylation and that glycosylation of individual sites on a substrate can decrease or, in rare cases, increase its sensitivity to proteolysis.
- Herpesviruses are among the most complex and widespread viruses, infection and propagation of which depend on envelope proteins. These proteins serve as mediators of cell entry as well as modulators of the immune response and are attractive vaccine targets. Although envelope proteins are known to carry glycans, little is known about the distribution, nature, and functions of these modifications. This is particularly true for O-glycans; thus we have recently developed a “bottom up” mass spectrometry-based technique for mapping O-glycosylation sites on herpes simplex virus type 1.