A new procedure was used to synthesize a derivative of ganglioside GM1 containing a photoreactive nitrophenyl azide group at the end of the fatty acyl moiety, using deAc-deAcyl-GM1 obtained by deacetylation of the sialic acid and deacylation of the ceramide portion of GM1. This deAc-deAcyl-GM1 was first acylated at the long chain base amino group with 12-aminododecanoic acid, which has the amino group protected by a fluorenyl residue, and tritium labeled at the sialic acid amino group with [3H]acetic anhydride of very high specific radioactivity. The fluorenyl group removed by ammonia treatment was substituted by a nitrophenyl azide group. Cultured human fibroblasts were exposed to mixtures of radioactive photolabeled GM1 and cold natural GM1 (1:10 by mol) for different times and then illuminated and the radioactive protein patterns studied by SDS-PAGE. After 2 h of exposure, the photolabeled GM1 was stably associated to the cells and underwent almost no metabolic processing, behaving exactly as the underivatized natural GM1. Under these conditions very few proteins became radioactive: one, of about 30 kDa, interacted with the ganglioside molecules inserted into the outer membrane layer; three, in the region of 46 kDa, interacted with the portion of associated ganglioside able to be released by trypsin treatment. Thus, it is evident that the ganglioside binding to fibroblasts and insertion into the outer layer of the plasma membrane involve few individual proteins. When the incubation was prolonged to 24 h, photolabeled GM1 underwent extensive metabolic processing and gave origin to the corresponding ganglioside derivatives GM2, GM3, and GD1a. Under these conditions many proteins became radioactive, a consequence of GM1 transfer from the surface to the interior of the cell and of the ready availability of interactions of GM1 and of its metabolites.
|Number of pages||8|
|Publication status||Published - 1989|
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