Concanavalin A interactions with asparagine-linked glycopeptides. Bivalency of bisected complex type oligosaccharides

J Biol Chem. 1987 Jan 25;262(3):1294-9.


In the preceding paper (Bhattacharyya, L., Ceccarini, C., Lorenzoni, P., and Brewer, C.F. (1987) J. Biol. Chem. 262, 1288-1293), we have demonstrated that certain high mannose and bisected hybrid type glycopeptides are bivalent for concanavalin A (ConA) binding. In the present study, we have investigated the interactions of ConA with a series of synthetic nonbisected and bisected complex type oligosaccharides and related glycopeptides. The modes of binding of the carbohydrates were studied by nuclear magnetic relaxation dispersion techniques, and their affinities were determined by hemagglutination inhibition measurements. We find that certain bisected complex type oligosaccharides are capable of binding and precipitating the lectin. The corresponding nonbisected analogs, however, bind but do not precipitate the protein. The stoichiometries of the precipitin reactions were investigated by quantitative precipitation analyses. The equivalence zones (regions of maximum precipitation) of the precipitin curves indicate that the bisected complex type oligosaccharides are bivalent for lectin binding. Data for the nonbisected analogs are consistent with their being univalent. The nuclear magnetic relaxation dispersion and precipitation data indicate that nonbisected and bisected complex type carbohydrates bind with different mechanisms and conformations. The former class binds by extended site interactions with the protein involving the 2 alpha-mannose residues on the alpha(1-6) and alpha(1-3) arms of the core beta-mannose residue. The latter class binds by only 1 of these 2 mannose residues, which leaves the other mannose residue free to bind to a second ConA molecule. The role of the bisecting GlcNAc residue in affecting the binding properties of complex type carbohydrates to ConA is discussed, and the results are related to the possible structure-function properties of complex type glycopeptides on the surface of cells.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Asparagine*
  • Binding Sites
  • Carbohydrate Conformation
  • Chemical Precipitation
  • Concanavalin A / metabolism*
  • Glycopeptides / metabolism*
  • Hemagglutination Inhibition Tests
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Mannose / metabolism*
  • Methylmannosides / pharmacology
  • Oligosaccharides / metabolism*


  • Glycopeptides
  • Methylmannosides
  • Oligosaccharides
  • Concanavalin A
  • methylmannoside
  • Asparagine
  • Mannose