bims-supasi Biomed News
on Sulfation pathways and signalling
Issue of 2023‒12‒03
eleven papers selected by
Jonathan Wolf Mueller, University of Birmingham

  1. Glycobiology. 2023 Nov 28. pii: cwad095. [Epub ahead of print]
      Heparan sulfate (HS) is a linear polysaccharide that plays a key role in cellular signaling networks. HS functions are regulated by its 6-O-sulfation, which is catalyzed by three HS 6-O-sulfotransferases (HS6STs). Notably, HS6ST2 is mainly expressed in the brain and HS6ST2 mutations are linked to brain disorders, but the underlying mechanisms remain poorly understood. To determine the role of Hs6st2 in the brain, we carried out a series of molecular and behavioral assessments on Hs6st2 knockout mice. We first carried out strong anion exchange-high performance liquid chromatography and found that knockout of Hs6st2 moderately decreases HS 6-O-sulfation levels in the brain. We then assessed body weights and found that Hs6st2 knockout mice exhibit increased body weight, which is associated with abnormal metabolic pathways. We also performed behavioral tests and found that Hs6st2 knockout mice showed memory deficits, which recapitulate patient clinical symptoms. To determine the molecular mechanisms underlying the memory deficits, we used RNA sequencing to examine transcriptomes in two memory-related brain regions, the hippocampus and cerebral cortex. We found that knockout of Hs6st2 impairs transcriptome in the hippocampus, but only mildly in the cerebral cortex. Furthermore, the transcriptome changes in the hippocampus are enriched in dendrite and synapse pathways. We also found that knockout of Hs6st2 decreases HS levels and impairs dendritic spines in hippocampal CA1 pyramidal neurons. Taken together, our study provides novel molecular and behavioral insights into the role of Hs6st2 in the brain, which facilitates a better understanding of HS6ST2 and HS-linked brain disorders.
    Keywords:  Dendritic spine; HS6ST2; heparan sulfate; heparan sulfate 6-O-sulfation; memory
  2. Mikrochim Acta. 2023 Dec 01. 190(12): 494
      An antifouling electrochemical biosensor was constructed based on chondroitin sulfate (CS)-functionalized polyaniline (CS/PANI) and DNA-peptide conjugates that is capable of assaying cortisol directly in human fluids. First, a CS-doped PANI nanocomposite (sensing substrate) was electrodeposited onto a bare glassy carbon electrode to promote electron transport, providing the sensing signal from high peak currents of PANI to improve the sensitivity of the biosensor. Dendritic DNA-peptide conjugates were assembled onto the CS/PANI by exploiting the highly specific and strong interactions between biotin and streptavidin, which amplified the sensing signals toward cortisol. The integration of the DNA-peptide conjugates into the CS/PANI nanocomposite ensured that the biosensor had a synergistic antifouling effect and was capable of detecting cortisol directly in body fluids (sweat, saliva, and tears). When assaying cortisol levels, the biosensor exhibited a linear range over the cortisol concentrations of 1 × 10-12-1 × 10-7 M and a low limit of detection (0.333 × 10-12 M). In the detection of cortisol in real samples, the relative standard deviation (RSD) of the biological samples ranged from 2.94 to 4.23%, and the recovery were calculated to be in the range 95.2-103.2%.
    Keywords:  Antifouling; Biosensor; Chondroitin sulfate; Cortisol; DNA-peptide conjugate; Differential pulse voltammetry; Modified electrode; Polyaniline
  3. JACS Au. 2023 Nov 27. 3(11): 3155-3164
      Keratan sulfate (KS) is a glycosaminoglycan that is widely expressed in the extracellular matrix of various tissue types, where it is involved in many biological processes. Herein, we describe a chemo-enzymatic approach to preparing well-defined KS oligosaccharides by exploiting the known and newly discovered substrate specificities of relevant sulfotransferases. The premise of the approach is that recombinant GlcNAc-6-O-sulfotransferases (CHST2) only sulfate terminal GlcNAc moieties to give GlcNAc6S that can be galactosylated by B4GalT4. Furthermore, CHST1 can modify the internal galactosides of a poly-LacNAc chain; however, it was found that a GlcNAc6S residue greatly increases the reactivity of CHST1 of a neighboring and internal galactoside. The presence of a 2,3-linked sialoside further modulates the site of modification by CHST1, and a galactoside flanked by 2,3-Neu5Ac and GlcNAc6S is preferentially sulfated over the other Gal residues. The substrate specificities of CHST1 and 2 were exploited to prepare a panel of KS oligosaccharides, including selectively sulfated N-glycans. The compounds and several other reference derivatives were used to construct a microarray that was probed for binding by several plant lectins, Siglec proteins, and hemagglutinins of influenza viruses. It was found that not only the sulfation pattern but also the presentation of epitopes as part of an O- or N-glycan determines binding properties.
  4. Methods Mol Biol. 2024 ;2728 173-180
      A major challenge in developing potential treatments for pregnancy complications is minimizing adverse effects to the fetus and mother. Placenta-targeted drug delivery could reduce the risks of drug treatments in pregnancy by targeting tissue where most pregnancy complications originate and decreasing dosages. We previously developed a tool for the targeted delivery of drug-carrying nanoparticles to the placenta using a synthetic placental chondroitin sulfate A-binding peptide (plCSA-BP) derived from the malarial protein VAR2CSA, which binds a distinct type of chondroitin sulfate A (CSA) exclusively expressed by placental trophoblasts. Liposomes are a type of nanoparticle already approved for use in humans by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and used successfully for the treatment of a wide range of diseases. Here, we present a detailed method to create plCSA-BP-decorated liposomes that can be used to deliver drugs specifically to placental trophoblasts. Liposomes are first generated by the standard film method and then conjugated to plCSA-BPs using the 1-ethyl-3-(3-dimethylaminopropyl) carbodiimide hydrochloride/N-hydroxysulfosuccinimide (EDC/NHS) bioconjugate technique. This protocol may facilitate bench-to-bedside translation of drug discovery for the treatment of pregnancy disorders by reducing risks of side effects, and enabling rapid and scalable production.
    Keywords:  EDC/NHS; Liposome; Placental chondroitin sulfate A; Placental chondroitin sulfate A binding peptide; Trophoblast
  5. Drug Test Anal. 2023 Nov 27.
      Sulfate metabolites of endogenous anabolic androgenic steroids (EAAS) have been shown to prolong the detection times compared with the conventional urinary markers of the steroid profile for oral and intramuscular administrations of testosterone (T). In this work, the sensitivity of sulfate EAAS markers for the detection of T gel administration has been evaluated in six Caucasian and six Asian male volunteers. Fourteen sulfate metabolites were measured in basal and post-administration samples after multiple doses of T gel (100 mg/day, three consecutive days), and the detection times based on individual thresholds for each volunteer were evaluated. Sulfate concentrations did not show adequate sensitivity, but the results of sulfate ratios were much more promising. Androsterone sulfate/testosterone sulfate (A-S/T-S), epiandrosterone sulfate/epitestosterone sulfate (epiA-S/E-S), epiA-S/T-S, and etiocholanolone sulfate/epitestosterone sulfate (Etio-S/E-S) provided the most consistent detectability for all volunteers and populations, with detection times ranging from 60 to 96 h since the first dose. Additional ratios improved detectability to up to 7 days, but only in particular volunteers. In general, sensitivity was similar to or better than the conventional testosterone/epitestosterone ratio (T/E) of the steroid profile, which further reinforces the conclusion that sulfate EAAS metabolites can be a good complement for the current steroid profile.
    Keywords:  doping control; endogenous steroid; sulfates; testosterone; topical administration
  6. Int J Fertil Steril. 2023 Nov 01. pii: 707105. [Epub ahead of print]18(1): 54-59
      BACKGROUND: In individuals with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), male subjects have consistently been linked to poor severity and prognosis. Data on sex hormones in non-critical COVID-19-infected patients are scarce. The aim of this study was to assess the status of total testosterone (TT) and dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) among noncritical patients with COVID-19 according to sex and their associations with clinical and biochemical features.MATERIALS AND METHODS: This cross-sectional observational study was done in the COVID-19 unit of a University hospital during the period of September 2021 to February 2022 among 91 adults (18-65 years) with reverse transcriptase- polymerase chain reaction confirmed noncritical COVID-19 patients. Blood was drawn by venipuncture before receiving steroids between 07:00 to 09:00 a.m. in a fasting state to measure serum TT and DHEAS by chemiluminescent microparticle immunoassay. Diagnosis and classification of COVID-19 were done according to World Health Organization's interim guidance. Age- and sex-specific laboratory reference values were used to classify the TT and DHEAS status of the patients.
    RESULTS: Only three males (8.1%) had low TT and the rest had normal TT. On the other hand, 15 (27.8%) of the females had high TT with normal levels in the rest. Similarly, 11 (29.7%) males had low DHEAS. Females had low, normal, and high DHEAS in four (7.4%), 48 (88.9%), and two (3.7%) cases respectively. Males with moderate severity of COVID-19 had significantly lower DHEAS (post hoc P=0.038) than the mild group. Both TT (P=0.008) and DHEAS (P=0.023) significantly correlated with neutrophils/lymphocytes ratio and only DHEAS with platelets/lymphocytes ratio (P=0.044) in males. In females, TT significantly correlated with serum sodium (P=0.034).
    CONCLUSION: In noncritical COVID-19 patients, substantial gender variations in TT and DHEAS were detected and correlated with severity markers in males.
    Keywords:  Androgen; Coronavirus Disease 2019; Noncritical; Testosterone; dehydroepiandrosterone Sulfate
  7. Clin Chem Lab Med. 2023 Dec 04.
      OBJECTIVES: A mass spectrometry (LC‒MS/MS)-based interlaboratory comparison study was performed for nine steroid analytes with five participating laboratories. The sample set contained 40 pooled samples of human serum generated from preanalyzed leftovers. To obtain a well-balanced distribution across reference intervals of each steroid, the leftovers first underwent a targeted mixing step.METHODS: All participants measured a sample set once using their own multianalyte protocols and calibrators. Four participants used in-house developed measurement platforms, including IVD-CE certified calibrators, which were used by three participants; the 5th lab used the whole LC‒MS kit from an IVD manufacturer. All labs reported results for 17-hydroxyprogesterone, androstenedione, cortisol, and testosterone, and four labs reported results for 11-deoxycortisol, corticosterone, cortisone, dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS), and progesterone.
    RESULTS: Good or acceptable overall comparability was found in Bland‒Altmann and Passing‒Bablok analyses. Mean bias against the overall mean remained less than ±10 % except for DHEAS, androstenedione, and progesterone at one site and for cortisol and corticosterone at two sites (max. -18.9 % for androstenedione). The main analytical problems unraveled by this study included a bias not previously identified in proficiency testing, operator errors, non-supported matrix types and higher inaccuracy and imprecision at lower ends of measuring intervals.
    CONCLUSIONS: This study shows that intermethod comparison is essential for monitoring the validity of an assay and should serve as an example of how external quality assessment could work in addition to organized proficiency testing schemes.
    Keywords:  LC‒MS/MS; endocrinology; laboratory medicine; method comparison; steroid measurement
  8. Clin Med Insights Endocrinol Diabetes. 2023 ;16 11795514231206732
      Background: The reproductive system is heavily dependent on ovarian follicles, which are made up of germ cells (oocytes) and granulosa cells (GCs), including cumulus granulosa cells (CGCs) and mural granulosa cells (MGCs). Understanding their normal and steroid-induced functions is the key to understanding the pathophysiology of endocrinal diseases in women.Objective: This study investigated the differentially expressed proteins by CGCs and MGCs of patients with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) and without subsequent exposure to dehydroepiandrosterone sulfate (DHEAS) and functional differentiation.
    Design: The present study was observational and experimental study carried out in hospital involving 80 female patients undergoing IVF for infertility.
    Methods: In this study, we isolated CGCs and MGCs from the follicular fluid of both PCOS and non-PCOS patients undergoing in vitro fertilization (IVF). The cells were cultured and treated with DHEAS for 48 hours, and these cells were extracted, digested, and analyzed by tandem mass spectrometry followed by processing of the results using open-source bioinformatics tools.
    Results: The present investigation discovered 276 and 341 proteins in CGCs and MGCs, respectively. DHEAS reduced the number of proteins expressed by CGCs and MGCs to 34 and 57 from 91 and 94, respectively. Venn results of CGCs revealed 49, 53, 36, and 21 proteins in normal CGCs, PCOS-CGCs, post-DHEAS, and PCOS-CGCs, respectively. Venn analysis of MGCs showed 51 proteins specific to PCOS and 29 shared by normal and PCOS samples after DHEAS therapy. MGCs express the most binding and catalytic proteins, whereas CGCs express transporter-related proteins. A protein pathway study demonstrated considerable differences between normal and PCOS samples, while DHEAS-treated samples of both cell lines showed distinct pathways. String findings identified important network route components such as albumin, actin, apolipoprotein, complement component C3, and heat shock protein.
    Conclusion: This is the first study to show how DHEAS-induced stress affects the expression of proteins by MGCs and CGCs isolated from normal and PCOS patients. Further studies are recommended to identify PCOS biomarkers from CGCs and MGCs expressed under the influence of DHEAS.
    Keywords:  DHEAS; PCOS; biomarker; cumulus granulosa cells; follicular fluid; mural granulosa cells; proteomics
  9. Methods Mol Biol. 2024 ;2737 265-273
      Ethyl glucuronide and ethyl sulfate emerged as the biomarkers of choice for detection of ethanol use as the required sample is urine, enabling easy and noninvasive collection. Further, these biomarkers have a longer detection window in urine than blood ethanol. A liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry method was developed and clinically validated using electrospray ionization in negative mode and selected reaction monitoring. A simple dilution was used for sample preparation on 100 microliters of urine. Gradient elution had a run time of 7 min. The reportable range was established to be 180-100,000 ng/mL for ethyl glucuronide and 50-46,600 ng/mL for ethyl sulfate and between-run imprecision was <7% for both analytes.
    Keywords:  Alcohol; Ethanol; Ethyl glucuronide; Ethyl sulfate; LC-MS/MS; Mass spectrometry
  10. Chemistry. 2023 Nov 27. e202302758
      Interactions of glycosaminoglycans (GAG) with proteins of the extracellular matrix govern and regulate complex physiological functions including cellular growth, immune response, and inflammation. Repetitive presentation of GAG binding motifs as found in native proteoglycans might enhance GAG-protein binding through multivalent interactions. Here, we report the chemical synthesis of dendritic GAG oligomers constructed of nona-sulfated hyaluronan tetrasaccharides for investigating the binding of the protein chemokine interleukin 8 (IL-8) to artificial, well-defined proteoglycan architectures. Binding of mutant monomeric and native dimerizable IL-8 was investigated by nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and isothermal titration calorimetry. Dendritic oligomerization of GAG increased the binding affinity of both monomeric and dimeric IL-8. Monomeric IL-8 bound to monomeric and dimeric GAG with KD values of 7.3 µM and 0.108 µM, respectively. The effect was less pronounced for dimerizable wildtype IL-8, for which GAG dimerization improved the affinity from 34 nM to 5 nM. Binding of dimeric IL-8 to oligomeric GAG was limited by steric crowding effects, strongly reducing the affinity of subsequent binding events. In conclusion, the strongest effect of GAG oligomerization was the amplified binding of IL-8 monomers, which might concentrate monomeric protein in the extracellular matrix and thus promote protein dimerization under physiological conditions.
    Keywords:  artificial proteoglycans; chemokine interleukin 8 (IL-8); isothermal titration calorimetry (ITC); multivalency; sulfated glycosaminoglycans (GAG)
  11. EJHaem. 2023 Nov;4(4): 1110-1116
      Hyperkalemia, an elevated blood potassium concentration exceeding 5.0 mEq/L, is associated with adverse outcomes and is frequently observed in hospitalized patients. Drug-induced hyperkalemia accounts for a significant proportion of cases, with heparin, commonly used for venous thrombosis prevention, suspected to contribute, though less recognized than other heparin-related side effects. Both unfractionated heparin (UFH) and low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) have been implicated in inducing hyperkalemia, primarily through the suppression of aldosterone levels and modulation of angiotensin II receptors. This systematic review examines the relationship between heparin, particularly LMWH, and hyperkalemia. Thirteen studies involving 1407 patients were analyzed. Findings indicated a lack of highquality evidence, with no significant increase in potassium levels associated with LMWH use. LMWH did not exhibit a dose-response relationship with hyperkalemia incidence. Additionally, mechanisms underlying the hypothetical LMWHinduced hyperkalemia remained inconclusive. While this suggests that LMWH is unlikely to be a primary cause of hyperkalemia, caution is warranted, especially in patients with elevated baseline potassium levels.
    Keywords:  HEPARIN; LMWH; enoxaparin; heparin induced hyperkalmeia; hyperkalemia; hypoaldosteronism