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Mar. Drugs 2017, 15(6), 161; doi:10.3390/md15060161

Isolation, Amino Acid Sequences, and Plausible Functions of the Galacturonic Acid-Binding Egg Lectin of the Sea Hare Aplysia kurodai

1
Department of Marine Biosciences, School of Marine Biosciences, Kitasato University,1-15-1, Minami-ku, Kitasato, Sagamihara, Kanagawa 252-0373, Japan
2
Faculty of Fisheries Sciences, Hokkaido University, Hakodate 041-8611, Japan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 31 March 2017 / Revised: 12 May 2017 / Accepted: 25 May 2017 / Published: 2 June 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Structures, Functions and Applications of Marine Lectins)
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Abstract

Egg lectins occur in a variety of animals ranging from mollusks to vertebrates. A few examples of molluscan egg lectins have been reported, including that of the sea hare Aplysia kurodai; however, their biological functions in the egg remain unclarified. We report the isolation, determination of primary structure, and possible functions of A. kurodai lectin (AKL) from the egg mass of A. kurodai. We obtained AKL as an inseparable mixture of isoproteins with a relative molecular mass of approximately 32 kDa by affinity purification. The hemagglutinating activity of AKL against rabbit erythrocytes was inhibited most potently by galacturonic acid and moderately by xylose. Nucleotide sequencing of corresponding cDNA obtained by rapid amplification of cDNA ends (RACE) allowed us to deduce complete amino acid sequences. The mature polypeptides consisted of 218- or 219-amino acids with three repeated domains. The amino acid sequence had similarities to hypothetical proteins of Aplysia spp., or domain DUF3011 of uncharacterized bacterial proteins. AKL is the first member of the DUF3011 family whose function, carbohydrate recognition, was revealed. Treatment of the egg with galacturonic acid, an AKL sugar inhibitor, resulted in deformation of the veliger larvae, suggesting that AKL is involved in organogenesis in the developmental stage of A. kurodai. View Full-Text
Keywords: Aplysia kurodai; egg lectin; embryonic development; galacturonic acid Aplysia kurodai; egg lectin; embryonic development; galacturonic acid
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Motohashi, S.; Jimbo, M.; Naito, T.; Suzuki, T.; Sakai, R.; Kamiya, H. Isolation, Amino Acid Sequences, and Plausible Functions of the Galacturonic Acid-Binding Egg Lectin of the Sea Hare Aplysia kurodai. Mar. Drugs 2017, 15, 161.

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