Background: Gc protein has been reported to be a precursor of Gc protein-derived macrophage activation factor (GcMAF) in the inflammation-primed macrophage activation cascade. An inducible beta-galactosidase of B cells and neuraminidase of T cells convert Gc protein to GcMAF.
Materials and methods: Gc protein from human serum was purified using 25(OH)D3 affinity column chromatography and modified to GcMAF using immobilized glycosidases (beta-galactosidase and neuraminidase) The sugar moiety structure of GcMAF was characterized by lectin blotting by Helix pomatia agglutinin. The biological activities of GcMAF were evaluated by a superoxide generation assay and a phagocytosis assay.
Results: We successfully purified Gc protein from human serum. GcMAF was detected by lectin blotting and showed a high biological activity.
Conclusion: Our results support the importance of the terminal N-acetylgalactosamine moiety in the GcMAF-mediated macrophage activation cascade, and the existence of constitutive GcMAF in human serum. These preliminary data are important for designing small molecular GcMAF mimics.