Serum N-glycan profiling studies during the past decades have shown robust associations between N-glycan changes and various biological conditions, including infections, in humans. Similar studies are scarcer for other mammals, despite the tremendous potential of serum N-glycans as biomarkers for infectious diseases in animal models of human disease and in the veterinary context. To expand the knowledge of serum N-glycan profiles in important mammalian model systems, in this study, we combined MALDI-TOF-MS analysis and HILIC-UPLC profiling of released N-glycans together with glycosidase treatments to characterize the glycan structures present in rhesus macaque serum. We used this baseline to monitor changes in serum N-glycans during infection with Brugia malayi, a parasitic nematode of humans responsible for lymphatic filariasis, in a longitudinal cohort of infected rhesus macaques. Alterations of the HILIC-UPLC profile, notably of abundant structures, became evident as early as 5 weeks post-infection. Given its prominent role in the immune response, contribution of immunoglobulin G to serum N-glycans was investigated. Finally, comparison with similar N-glycan profiling performed during infection with the dog heartworm Dirofilaria immitis suggests that many changes observed in rhesus macaque serum N-glycans are specific for lymphatic filariasis.
© 2022. The Author(s).