In mammals, two active xylosyltransferase isoenzymes (EC 18.104.22.168) exist. Both xylosyltransferases I and II (XT-I and XT-II) catalyze the transfer of xylose from UDP-xylose to select serine residues in the proteoglycan core protein. Altered XT activity in human serum was found to correlate directly with various diseases such as osteoarthritis, systemic sclerosis, liver fibrosis, and pseudoxanthoma elasticum. To interpret the significance of the enzyme activity alteration observed in disease states it is important to know which isoenzyme is responsible for the XT activity in serum. Until now it was impossible for a specific measurement of XT-I or XT-II activity, respectively, because of the absence of a suitable enzyme substrate. This issue has now been solved and the following experimental study demonstrates for the first time, via the enzyme activity that XT-II is the predominant isoenzyme responsible for XT activity in human serum. The proof was performed using natural UDP-xylose as the xylose donor, as well as the artificial compound UDP-4-azido-4-deoxyxylose, which is a selective xylose donor for XT-I.
Keywords: Glycosaminoglycan; Human serum; Mass spectrometry; Proteoglycan; Xylosyltransferase.
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