Relevance of sialoglycoconjugates in murine thymocytes during maturation and selection in the thymus

Department of Cellular Biology, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad de México, Mexico City, Mexico
Immunological investigations (Impact Factor: 1.99). 02/1999; 28(1):9-18. DOI: 10.3109/08820139909022719
Source: PubMed


Differentiation of most T lymphocytes is characterized not only by the variable expression of CD4/CD8 coreceptor molecules and increased surface density of the T cell antigen receptor, but also by changes in the glycosylation pattern of cell surface glycolipids or glycoproteins. In this work we evaluated the changes in the sialylation pattern in thymus sections from normal and dexamethasone treated mice. We used sialic acid specific lectins, such as Sambucus nigra agglutinin (SNA, NeuAcalpha2,6-Gal specific) and Maackia amurensis agglutinin (MAA, NeuAcalpha2,3-Gal specific). Our results indicate that the sialylation pattern was modified during the maturation process of thymic cells. The immature CD4-CD8- and CD4+CD8+ cortical thymocytes were recognized by SNA, whereas the mature single positive (CD4+ or CD8+) medullary cells, preferentially bound MAA lectin. However, in the corticomedullary region we found not only SNA+ cells, but also MAA+ cells. In the thymus of dexamethasone treated mice, the clusters of thymocytes undergoing apoptosis in the cortex were characteristically stained by SNA. These results suggest that in the initial stages of the differentiation pathway, a great number of thymocytes express an alpha2,6 linked sialic acid on their surface and as they progress to more mature stages there is a change in the sialylation pattern to alpha2,3 linked sialic acids probably due to a regulated expression of different sialyltransferases, which could be modulated by the thymic microenvironment.

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    • "Thus, the goblet cells of all of the mammals, and the mucus surface cells, pyloric glands, and Brunner's glands of half of the investigated mammals were labelled. On the other hand, the lectins SNA-I and MAA are extremely specific: SNA-I binds only to Neu5Ac␣2,6Gal (Shibuya et al., 1987), and MAA binds only to Neu5Ac␣2,3Gal (Alvarez et al., 1999). In a study of lymphoid organs in chickens, Jörns et al. (2003) differentiated between these two linkages by showing that hardly any structures in the spleen reacted with MAA, while SNA-I labelled the endothelium, lymphocytes in the PALS and PELS, and cells with dendritic morphology in the red pulp. "
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    ABSTRACT: Mucins of the gastroduodenal junction are secreted by the mucous surface and mucus-producing glandular cells in the stomach, and by goblet cells and Brunner's glands in the duodenum. Developmental studies have demonstrated that Brunner's glands can arise from undifferentiated gastric epithelium and/or intestinal epithelium in the proximal duodenum. The aim of this study was to investigate the carbohydrate composition of mucins from this region and compare it with that of mucins from Brunner's glands to evaluate the probable evolution of mucins from these glands. Toward that end, paraffin sections from 13 mammalian species were stained by classic carbohydrate histochemistry and treated with 13 lectins. In general, the mucous surface cells of the stomach, pyloric glands, duodenal goblet cells, and Brunner's glands secretory epithelium had different lectin-binding patterns. However, the lectin-binding profile of the secretory epithelium of Brunner's glands resembled that of pyloric glands more closely than that of duodenal goblet cells and mucous surface cells of the stomach. Mucins from Brunner's glands and pyloric glands showed a greater terminal carbohydrate residue diversity than those of gastric mucous surface cells or duodenal goblet cells. The lectin-binding profile argues for the evolution of similar mucins from the epithelia of Brunner's glands and pyloric glands. The greater diversity of carbohydrate residues in mucins secreted by Brunner's glands suggests that their mucus is more adaptable. This may explain why Brunner's glands metaplasia rather than goblet cell metaplasia is seen in the mucosa adjacent to chronic intestinal ulcers.
    Full-text · Article · Jul 2004 · The Anatomical Record Part A Discoveries in Molecular Cellular and Evolutionary Biology
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    • "Moreover the CSA treatment determined, at the surface of the T-lymphocytes, the appearance of D- galactose(ß1→3)-N-acetyl-D-galactosamine, ß-N-acetyl- D-galactosamine and sialic acid as revealed by the reactivity with PNA and SBA lectin only after neuraminidase treatment. Our results were in keeping with data of the literature reporting changes in glycosylation of surface glycolipids and/or glycoproteins and in sialilation process during T lymphocytopoiesis (Krishna and Varki, 1997; Alvarez et al., 1999). The evidence of such a large amount of terminal and subterminal sugar residues in T-lymphocytes could suggest their possible role in blocking the activation and/or in maintaining the inactivation of T-lymphocytes, as a consequence of the CSA treatment (Schauer , 1982). "
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    ABSTRACT: It is well known that cell surface glycoconjugates play a determinant role in cellular recognition, cell-to-cell adhesion and serve as receptor molecules. T-lymphocytes are in strict contact with the thymic epithelial cells, which control their process of maturation and proliferation. On the other hand the normal maturation of the epithelial cells is believed to be induced by T-lymphocytes. For these reasons we have studied the glycoconjugates saccharidic moieties of the sessile and motile cells in the thymus of normal male albino Wistar rats and their changes following cyclosporin-A treatment, using a battery of seven HRP-lectins. Cytochemical controls were performed for specificity of lectin-sugar reaction. Some sections were pre-treated with neuraminidase prior to staining with HRP-lectins. Our results have demonstrated, in the control rats, a large amount and a variety of terminal and subterminal oligosaccharides within and/or on the epithelial thymic cells and in macrophages. After cyclosporin-A treatment, among the thymic epithelial cells, the subcapsular, paraseptal and perivascular cells showed the loss of some sugar residues, which characterized the same cells in the intact thymus. Some hypotheses are reported on the role played by the glycoconjugate sugar residues in control and cyclosporin-A treated rats.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 2002 · Histology and histopathology
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    ABSTRACT: 1. The action in Onapristone infant male rats displays short-term and delayed effects. 2. Suppression of intestinal brush-border enzymes and increase of thymus mass were observed only immediately after 3-day treatment with Onapristone. After an additional 3 days its effect disappeared. There was no immediate or delayed effect of Onapristone on the desialylation of brush-border enzymes. 3. In the short-term and delayed effects, Onapristone suppressed the HC-provoked induction of several intestinal brush-border enzymes, especially alpha-glycosidases. In the delayed effect the drug also suppressed thymolysis induced by the exogeneously given glucocorticoid, and suppressed the HC-induced desialylation of a brush-border enzyme DP IV, which serves as a marker of the desialylation process. 4. These experiments seem to support a conclusion that the postnatal development of intestinal brush-border enzymes and the development of thymus in infant rats are controlled by endogeneously secreted glucocorticoids. 5. The control of sialylation of intestinal brush-border proteins by endogeneously secreted glucocorticoids during the postnatal development of the rat remains debatable.
    Full-text · Article · Feb 1995 · Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology
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