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In humans and rodents, the lysosomal catabolism of core Man(3)GlcNAc(2) N-glycan structures is catalyzed by the concerted action of several exoglycosidases, including a broad specificity lysosomal alpha-mannosidase (LysMan), core-specific alpha1,6-mannosidase, beta-mannosidase, and cleavage at the reducing terminus by a di-N-acetylchitobiase. We describe here the first cloning, expression, purification, and characterization of a novel human glycosylhydrolase family 38 alpha-mannosidase with catalytic characteristics similar to those established previously for the core-specific alpha1,6-mannosidase (acidic pH optimum, inhibition by swainsonine and 1,4-dideoxy-1,4-imino-d-mannitol, and stimulation by Co(2+) and Zn(2+)). Substrate specificity studies comparing the novel human alpha-mannosidase with human LysMan revealed that the former enzyme efficiently cleaved only the alpha1-6mannose residue from Man(3)GlcNAc but not Man(3)GlcNAc(2) or other larger high mannose oligosaccharides, indicating a requirement for chitobiase action before alpha1,6-mannosidase activity. In contrast, LysMan cleaved all of the alpha-linked mannose residues from high mannose oligosaccharides except the core alpha1-6mannose residue. alpha1,6-Mannosidase transcripts were ubiquitously expressed in human tissues, and expressed sequence tag searches identified homologous sequences in murine, porcine, and canine databases. No expressed sequence tags were identified for bovine alpha1,6-mannosidase, despite the identification of two sequence homologs in the bovine genome. The lack of conservation in 5'-flanking sequences for the bovine alpha1,6-mannosidase genes may lead to defective transcription similar to transcription defects in the bovine chitobiase gene. These results suggest that the chitobiase and alpha1,6-mannosidase function in tandem for mammalian lysosomal N-glycan catabolism.


Chaeho Park, Lu Meng, Leslie H Stanton, Robert E Collins, Steven W Mast, Xiaobing Yi, Heather Strachan, Kelley W Moremen. Characterization of a human core-specific lysosomal {alpha}1,6-mannosidase involved in N-glycan catabolism. The Journal of biological chemistry. 2005 Nov 4;280(44):37204-16

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PMID: 16115860

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