Platelet-localized ST6Gal1 does not impact IgG sialylation.

Glendenning LM, Zhou JY, Kukan EN, Gao C, Cummings RD, Joshi S, Whiteheart SW, Cobb BA. Platelet-localized ST6Gal1 does not impact IgG sialylation. Glycobiology. 2023;33(11):943–953.


The IgG antibody class forms an important basis of the humoral immune response, conferring reciprocal protection from both pathogens and autoimmunity. IgG function is determined by the IgG subclass, as defined by the heavy chain, as well as the glycan composition at N297, the conserved site of N-glycosylation within the Fc domain. For example, lack of core fucose promotes increased antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity, whereas α2,6-linked sialylation by the enzyme ST6Gal1 helps to drive immune quiescence. Despite the immunological significance of these carbohydrates, little is known about how IgG glycan composition is regulated. We previously reported that mice with ST6Gal1-deficient B cells have unaltered IgG sialylation. Likewise, ST6Gal1 released into the plasma by hepatocytes does not significantly impact overall IgG sialylation. Since IgG and ST6Gal1 have independently been shown to exist in platelet granules, it was possible that platelet granules could serve as a B cell-extrinsic site for IgG sialylation. To address this hypothesis, we used a platelet factor 4 (Pf4)-Cre mouse to delete ST6Gal1 in megakaryocytes and platelets alone or in combination with an albumin-Cre mouse to also remove it from hepatocytes and the plasma. The resulting mouse strains were viable and had no overt pathological phenotype. We also found that despite targeted ablation of ST6Gal1, no change in IgG sialylation was apparent. Together with our prior findings, we can conclude that in mice, neither B cells, the plasma, nor platelets have a substantial role in homeostatic IgG sialylation.

Last updated on 05/08/2024