Ectopic expression of 1,6 fucosyltransferase in mice causes steatosis in the liver and kidney accompanied by a modification of lysosomal acid lipase

Department of Biochemistry, Osaka University Medical School, Osaka 565-0871, Japan.
Glycobiology (Impact Factor: 3.15). 03/2001; 11(2):165-74. DOI: 10.1093/glycob/11.2.165
Source: PubMed


The alpha1,6 fucosyltransferase (alpha1,6 FucT) catalyzes the transfer of a fucose from GDP-fucose to the innermost GlcNAc residue of N-linked glycans via an alpha1,6 linkage. alpha1,6 FucT was overexpressed in transgenic mice under the control of a combined cytomegalovirus and chicken beta-actin promoter. Histologically numerous small vacuoles, in which lipid droplets had accumulated, were observed in hepatocytes and proximal renal tubular cells. Electron microscopic studies showed that the lipid droplets were membrane-bound and apparently localized within the lysosomes. Cholesterol esters and triglycerides were significantly increased in liver and kidney of the transgenic mice. Liver lysosomal acid lipase (LAL) activity was significantly lower in the transgenic mice compared to the wild mice, whereas LAL protein level, which was detected immunochemically, was increased, indicating that the specific activity of LAL was much lower in the transgenic mice. In all of the transgenic and nontransgenic mice examined, the activity of liver LAL was negatively correlated with the level of alpha1,6 FucT activity. As evidenced by lectin and immunoblot analysis, LAL was found to be more fucosylated in the transgenic mice, suggesting that the aberrant fucosylation of LAL causes an accumulation of inactive LAL in the lysosomes. Such an accumulation of inactive LAL could be a likely cause for a steatosis in the lysosomes of the liver and kidney in the case of the alpha1,6 FucT transgenic mice.

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