Distinct human (1,3)-fucosyltransferases drive Lewis-X/sialyl Lewis-X assembly in human cells Article

cited authors

  • Mondal, N; Dykstra, B; Lee, J; Ashline, DJ; Reinhold, VN; Rossi, DJ; Sackstein, R

fiu authors


  • In humans, six (1,3)-fucosyltransferases ((1,3)-FTs: FT3/ FT4/FT5/FT6/FT7/FT9) reportedly fucosylate terminal lactosaminyl glycans yielding Lewis-X (LeX; CD15) and/or sialyl Lewis-X (sLeX; CD15s), structures that play key functions in cell migration, development, and immunity. Prior studies analyzing (1,3)-FT specificities utilized either purified and/or recombinant enzymes to modify synthetic substrates under nonphysi-ological reaction conditions or molecular biology approaches wherein (1,3)-FTs were expressed in mammalian cell lines, notably excluding investigations using primary human cells. Accordingly, although significant insights into (1,3)-FT catalytic properties have been obtained, uncertainty persists regarding their human LeX/sLeX biosynthetic range across various glycoconjugates. Here, we undertook a comprehensive evaluation of the lactosaminyl product specificities of intracellularly expressed (1,3)-FTs using a clinically relevant primary human cell type, mesenchymal stem cells. Cells were transfected with modified mRNA encoding each human (1,3)-FT, and the resultant (1,3)-fucosylated lactosaminyl glycoconjugates were analyzed using a combination of flow cytometry and MS. The data show that biosynthesis of sLeX is driven by FTs-3, -5, -6, and -7, with FT6 and FT7 having highest potency. FT4 and FT9 dominantly biosynthesize LeX, and, among all FTs, FT6 holds a unique capacity in creating sLeX and LeX determinants across protein and lipid glycoconjugates. Surprisingly, FT4 does not generate sLeX on glycolipids, and neither FT4, FT6, nor FT9 synthesizes the internally fucosylated sialyllactosamine VIM-2 (CD65s). These results unveil the relevant human lactosaminyl glycans created by human (1,3)-FTs, providing novel insights on how these isoenzymes stereoselectively shape biosynthesis of vital glycoconjugates, thereby biochemically programming human cell migration and tuning human immunologic and developmental processes.

publication date

  • May 11, 2018

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

start page

  • 7300

end page

  • 7314


  • 293


  • 19