Multiple phenotypic changes in mice after knockout of the B3gnt5 gene, encoding Lc3 synthase--a key enzyme in lacto-neolacto ganglioside synthesis.
BACKGROUND: Ganglioside biosynthesis occurs through a multi-enzymatic pathway which at the lactosylceramide step is branched into several biosynthetic series. Lc3 synthase utilizes a variety of galactose-terminated glycolipids as acceptors by establishing a glycosidic bond in the beta-1,3-linkage to GlcNaAc to extend the lacto- and neolacto-series gangliosides. In order to examine the lacto-series ganglioside functions in mice, we used gene knockout technology to generate Lc3 synthase gene B3gnt5-deficient mice by two different strategies and compared the phenotypes of the two null mouse groups with each other and with their wild-type counterparts. RESULTS: B3gnt5 gene knockout mutant mice appeared normal in the embryonic stage and, if they survived delivery, remained normal during early life. However, about 9% developed early-stage growth retardation, 11% died postnatally in less than 2 months, and adults tended to die in 5-15 months, demonstrating splenomegaly and notably enlarged lymph nodes. Without lacto-neolacto series gangliosides, both homozygous and heterozygous mice gradually displayed fur loss or obesity, and breeding mice demonstrated reproductive defects. Furthermore, B3gnt5 gene knockout disrupted the functional integrity of B cells, as manifested by a decrease in B-cell numbers in the spleen, germinal center disappearance, and less efficiency to proliferate in hybridoma fusion. CONCLUSIONS: These novel results demonstrate unequivocally that lacto-neolacto series gangliosides are essential to multiple physiological functions, especially the control of reproductive output, and spleen B-cell abnormality. We also report the generation of anti-IgG response against the lacto-series gangliosides 3'-isoLM1 and 3',6'-isoLD1.
Kuan, C-T; Chang, J; Mansson, J-E; Li, J; Pegram, C; Fredman, P; McLendon, RE; Bigner, DD
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