The attachment of N-linked oligosaccharide chains to proteins is an important cotranslational process. These chains can, in some cases, serve to stabilize the protein, while in other cases they function as recognition elements. A key enzyme in the N-glycosylation process is oligosaccharyltransferase (OT). In yeast this enzyme, which is found in the endoplasmic reticulum, consists of nine different transmembrane protein subunits. Our general aim is to learn more about the functions of the multiple subunits of yeast OT and their mode of interaction with each other. Using a combination of biochemical and genetic techniques the subunit Ost1p has been shown to recognize Asn-X-Ser/Thr glycosylation sites. The principle tool used in the identification process was a benzophenone-based glycosylation site peptide that was shown to be crosslinked to Ost1p. Our current objective is to identify the domain in the primary structure that is involved in recognition of the glycosylation site sequence. By use of bifunctional crosslinkers, the possible interaction of Ost1p with other subunits of OT will be studied. This work and other studies on the OT subunits are concisely summarized.
Copyright 1999 Academic Press.