A large family of UDP-GalNAc:polypeptide GalNAc transferases (ppGalNAc-Ts) initiates and defines sites of mucin-type Ser/Thr-O-GalNAc glycosylation. Family members have been classified into peptide- and glycopeptide-preferring subfamilies, although both families possess variable activities against glycopeptide substrates. All but one isoform contains a C-terminal carbohydrate-binding lectin domain whose roles in modulating glycopeptide specificity is just being understood. We have previously shown for several peptide-preferring isoforms that the presence of a remote Thr-O-GalNAc, 6-17 residues from a Ser/Thr acceptor site, may enhance overall catalytic activity in an N- or C-terminal direction. This enhancement varies with isoform and is attributed to Thr-O-GalNAc interactions at the lectin domain. We now report on the glycopeptide substrate utilization of a series of glycopeptide (human-ppGalNAc-T4, T7, T10, T12 and fly PGANT7) and peptide-preferring transferases (T2, T3 and T5) by exploiting a series of random glycopeptide substrates designed to probe the functions of their catalytic and lectin domains. Glycosylation was observed at the -3, -1 and +1 residues relative to a neighboring Thr-O-GalNAc, depending on isoform, which we attribute to specific Thr-O-GalNAc binding at the catalytic domain. Additionally, these glycopeptide-preferring isoforms show remote lectin domain-assisted Thr-O-GalNAc enhancements that vary from modest to none. We conclude that the glycopeptide specificity of the glycopeptide-preferring isoforms predominantly resides in their catalytic domain but may be further modulated by remote lectin domain interactions. These studies further demonstrate that both domains of the ppGalNAc-Ts have specialized and unique functions that work in concert to control and order mucin-type O-glycosylation.
Keywords: glycoprotein biosynthesis; glycosyltransferase; lectin; mucin.
© The Author 2015. Published by Oxford University Press. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.