Membrane Distribution and Activity of a Neuronal Voltage-Gated K+ Channel is Modified by Replacement of Complex Type N-Glycans with Hybrid Type

J Glycobiol. 2017;6(3):128. doi: 10.4172/2168-958X.1000128. Epub 2017 Oct 31.


Abnormal modifications in N-glycosylation processing are commonly associated with neurological disorders, although the impact of specific N-glycans on neuronal excitability is unknown. By replacement of complex types of N-glycans with hybrid types in neuroblastoma cells, we provide the first study that addresses how distinct N-glycan types impact neuronal excitability. Using CRISPR/Cas9 technology, NB_1, a clonal cell line derived from rat neuroblastoma cells (NB), was modified to create an N-glycosylation mutant cell line, NB_1 (-Mgat2), which expresses predominantly hybrid type N-glycans. Western and lectin blotting, flow cytometry, TIRF and DIC microscopy, and patch clamp studies were conducted. Lectin binding revealed the predominant type of N-glycans expressed in NB_1 (-Mgat2) is hybrid while those of NB and NB_1 are complex. Kv3.1 b-expressing cells with complex N-glycans localized more glycosylated Kv3.1b to the neurites than cells with hybrid N-glycans. Further the absence of N-glycan attachment to Kv3.1b was critical for sub-plasma distribution of Kv3.1b to neurites in primary adult mammalian neurons, along with NB cells. Replacement of complex type N-glycans with hybrid type hindered the opening and closing rates of outward ionic currents of Kv3.1 b-expressing NB cells. The lacks of N-glycan attachment hindered the rates even more but were not significantly different between the NB cell lines. Taken together, our evidence supports N-glycosylation impacts the sub-plasma membrane localization and activity of Kv3.1 b-containing channels. We propose that N-glycosylation processing of Kv3.1 b-containing channels contributes to neuronal excitability, and abnormal modifications in N-glycosylation processing of Kv3.1b could contribute to neurological diseases.

Keywords: Cell surface glycan; Neuroblastoma; Neurons; Outward ionic currents; Transmembrane glycoprotein; Voltage-gated potassium channel.