A mutated transferrin receptor lacking asparagine-linked glycosylation sites shows reduced functionality and an association with binding immunoglobulin protein

Anthony M. Williams, Caroline Enns

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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The function of the transferrin receptor is to transport iron-bound transferrin into the cell. In order to function properly, this dimeric glycoprotein must be expressed on the cell surface and be able to bind transferrin. Site-directed mutagenesis was performed to abolish the three asparagine-linked glycosylation consensus sequences of the human transferrin receptor. The DNA encoding the mutated transferrin receptor was stably transfected into mouse fibroblasts. This form of the human transferrin receptor shows reduced transferrin binding, reduced intersubunit bond formation, and reduced cell surface expression, indicating that the transferrin receptor which lacks asparaginelinked glycosylation is not fully functional. In addition, the mutated form of the receptor is not processed as quickly. It shows an association with an endoplasmic reticular chaperone protein, binding immunoglobulin protein, leading to the hypothesis that the mutated transferrin receptor experiences increased retention in the endoplasmic reticulum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17648-17654
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Biological Chemistry
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - Sep 15 1991


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry

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