Increase in Sialylation and Branching in the Mouse Serum N-glycome Correlates with Inflammation and Ovarian Tumour Progression

Saldova, Radka
Piccard, Helene
Harvey, David J.
Struwe, Weston B.
Galligan, Marie C.
Berghmans, Nele
Madden, Stephen F.
Opdenakker, Ghislain
Rudd, Pauline M.
Ovarian cancer is the most lethal gynaecological cancer and is often diagnosed in late stage, often as the result of the unavailability of sufficiently sensitive biomarkers for early detection, tumour progression and tumour-associated inflammation. Glycosylation is the most common posttranslational modification of proteins; it is altered in cancer and therefore is a potential source of biomarkers. We investigated the quantitative and qualitative effects of anti-inflammatory (acetylsalicylic acid) and pro-inflammatory (thioglycolate and chlorite-oxidized oxyamylose) drugs on glycosylation in mouse cancer serum. A significant increase in sialylation and branching of glycans in mice treated with an inflammation-inducing compound was observed. Moreover, the increases in sialylation correlated with increased tumour sizes. Increases in sialylation and branching were consistent with increased expression of sialyltransferases and the branching enzyme MGAT5. Because the sialyltransferases are highly conserved among species, the described changes in the ovarian cancer mouse model are relevant to humans and serum N-glycome analysis for monitoring disease treatment and progression might be a useful biomarker ​
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