Point Mutations Identified in Lec8 Chinese Hamster Ovary Glycosylation Mutants that Inactivate Both the UDP-galactose and CMP-sialic Acid Transporters

Stefan Oelmann, Pamela Stanley, Rita Gerardy-Schahn

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Nucleotide-sugar transporters (NSTs) are critical components of glycosylation pathways in eukaryotes. The identification of structural elements that are involved in NST functions provides an important task. Chinese hamster ovary glycosylation mutants defective in nucleotide-sugar transport provide access to inactive transporters that can define such structure/function relationships. In this study, we have cloned the hamster UDP-galactose transporter (UGT) and identified defects in UGT gene transcripts from nine independent Chinese hamster ovary mutants that belong to the Lec8 complementation group. Reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction with primers that span the UGT open reading frame showed that three Lec8 mutants express a full-length open reading frame, while six Lec8 mutants predominantly express truncated UGT gene transcripts. Sequencing identified different single or triplet nucleotide changes in full-length UGT transcripts from three of the mutants. These mutations translate into three different amino acid changes at positions that are highly conserved in all the known mammalian NSTs. Transfection of a cDNA encoding either of the mutations Aserine 213 or G281D failed to correct the UDP-galactose transport defect in Lec8 transfectants. Most importantly, introducing these same mutations into the homologous region of the murine CMP-sialic acid transporter caused inactivation of this transporter. Thus, identifying point mutations that inactivate UGT in Lec8 mutants resulted in the discovery of amino acids that are critical to the activity of both UGT and CST, the two most divergent mammalian NSTs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)26291-26300
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number28
StatePublished - Jul 13 2001


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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