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Bothrops snake venoms: impact of glycosylation on the complexity of proteomes and toxins function

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Carolina Brás Costa
Total Authors: 1
Document type: Doctoral Thesis
Press: São Paulo.
Institution: Universidade de São Paulo (USP). Conjunto das Químicas (IQ e FCF) (CQ/DBDCQ)
Defense date:
Examining board members:
Solange Maria de Toledo Serrano; Adriana Franco Paes Leme
Advisor: Solange Maria de Toledo Serrano

Structural variability is a feature of snake venom proteins, and glycosylation is one of the main post-translational modifications that contributes to the diversification of venom proteomes. Recent studies by our group have shown that Bothrops venoms are markedly defined by their glycoprotein content, and that most hybrid and complex N-glycan structures identified in eight venoms of this genus contain sialic acid units. In parallel, the presence of a bisected N-acetylglucosamine structure was identified in B. cotiara venom glycoproteins. Thus, with the aim of investigating the variation in the content of glycoproteins, as well as the mechanisms involved in the generation of different Bothrops venoms, in this study the glycoproteomes of nine Bothrops venoms (B. atrox, B. cotiara, B. erythromelas, B. fonsecai, B. insularis, B. jararaca, B. jararacussu, B. moojeni e B. neuwiedi) were comparatively analyzed. The glycoproteomic approaches involved affinity chromatography and pulldown using, respectively, the lectins SNA (Sambucus nigra agglutinin) and MAL I (Maackia amurensis lectin), which show affinity for sialic acid units at positions, respectively, α2,6 and α2,3, and affinity chromatography with PHA-E (Phaseolus vulgaris erythroagglutinin), which recognizes bisected N-acetylglucosamine. In addition, protein electrophoresis, lectin blot, and protein identification by mass spectrometry were employed for glycoproteome characterization. The lectins generated venom fractions enriched with different components, where the main classes of glycoproteins identified were metalloprotease, serine protease, and L-amino acid oxidase, in addition to other low abundant enzymes. The different contents of proteins recognized by these lectins of distinct specificities highlighted new aspects of the variability of the glycoprotein subproteomes of these venoms, depending on the species. Furthermore, considering that metalloproteases and serine proteases are abundant components of these venoms and essential in Bothrops envenomation, and that these enzymes contain several glycosylation sites, the role of sialic acid units in their proteolytic activities was evaluated. Thus, enzymatic removal of sialic acid (i) altered the pattern of gelatinolysis in zymography of most venoms, (ii) decreased the proteolytic activity of some venoms on fibrinogen and the clotting activity of human plasma of all venoms, and (iii) altered the hydrolysis profile of plasma proteins by B. jararaca venom, indicating that this carbohydrate may play a role in the interaction of proteases with their protein substrates. In contrast, the profile of amidolytic activity of the venoms did not change after removal of sialic acid and incubation with the substrate Bz-Arg-pNA, indicating that sialic acid is not essential in N-glycans of serine proteases acting on small substrates. Together, these results expand the knowledge about the variability of proteomes of Bothrops venoms and point to the importance of carbohydrate chains containing sialic acid in the enzymatic activities of venom proteases. (AU)

FAPESP's process: 17/09929-3 - Bothrops snake venoms: impact of glycosylation on the complexity of proteomes and toxins function
Grantee:Carolina Brás Costa
Support Opportunities: Scholarships in Brazil - Doctorate (Direct)