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Molecules 2015, 20(5), 9468-9486;

Protein-Carbohydrate Interaction between Sperm and the Egg-Coating Envelope and Its Regulation by Dicalcin, a Xenopus laevis Zona Pellucida Protein-Associated Protein

Department of Physiology, Toho University, Tokyo 143-8540, Japan
Academic Editor: Els Van Damme
Received: 3 March 2015 / Accepted: 13 May 2015 / Published: 22 May 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Protein-Carbohydrate Interactions, and Beyond)
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Protein-carbohydrate interaction regulates multiple important processes during fertilization, an essential biological event where individual gametes undergo intercellular recognition to fuse and generate a zygote. In the mammalian female reproductive tract, sperm temporarily adhere to the oviductal epithelium via the complementary interaction between carbohydrate-binding proteins on the sperm membrane and carbohydrates on the oviductal cells. After detachment from the oviductal epithelium at the appropriate time point following ovulation, sperm migrate and occasionally bind to the extracellular matrix, called the zona pellucida (ZP), which surrounds the egg, thereafter undergoing the exocytotic acrosomal reaction to penetrate the envelope and to reach the egg plasma membrane. This sperm-ZP interaction also involves the direct interaction between sperm carbohydrate-binding proteins and carbohydrates within the ZP, most of which have been conserved across divergent species from mammals to amphibians and echinoderms. This review focuses on the carbohydrate-mediated interaction of sperm with the female reproductive tract, mainly the interaction between sperm and the ZP, and introduces the fertilization-suppressive action of dicalcin, a Xenopus laevis ZP protein-associated protein. The action of dicalcin correlates significantly with a dicalcin-dependent change in the lectin-staining pattern within the ZP, suggesting a unique role of dicalcin as an inherent protein that is capable of regulating the affinity between the lectin and oligosaccharides attached on its target glycoprotein. View Full-Text
Keywords: egg-coating envelope; sperm; ZP protein egg-coating envelope; sperm; ZP protein

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Miwa, N. Protein-Carbohydrate Interaction between Sperm and the Egg-Coating Envelope and Its Regulation by Dicalcin, a Xenopus laevis Zona Pellucida Protein-Associated Protein. Molecules 2015, 20, 9468-9486.

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