Polysialic acid plays a key role in cancer metastasis and neurodevelopment. Our aim was to determine the developmental gene-expression profiles for the two polysialyltransferases ST8SiaII and ST8SiaIV, neural cell-adhesion molecules (NCAMs), SynCAM1, neuropilin-2 (NRP2) and their polysialylated cognate glycans in different regions of the piglet brain during postnatal development. Our findings show that: 1)the cellular levels of mRNA coding for ST8SiaII and ST8SiaIV, NCAMs, SynCAM1, NRP2 and polySia are age-dependent and cell-type-specific during neonatal brain development, 2)there was a lack of correlation between abundance level of mRNA coding for ST8SiaII and ST8SiaIV and the abundance level of the post-translation expression of polySia in all nine brain regions, 3)expression levels of polySia did not correlate with the levels of the carrier proteins NCAM-140, SynCAM1 and NRP2 in nine brain regions, and 4)the cellular abundance of ST8SiaII and ST8SiaIV in nine subregions of piglet brain is regulated at the level of translation/post-translation, and not at the level of transcription. Collectively, our findings suggest that neuronal and glial cells within different regions of the brain have different transcriptional programs that can direct cell division at different rates based on the activity levels of ST8SiaII and ST8SiaIV and the level of their carrier proteins during neurodevelopment.
Chen, Y., Ren, H., Zhang, N., Troy, F. A., & Wang, B. (2017). Biochemical characterization and analyses of polysialic-acid-associated carrier proteins and genes in piglets during neonatal development. ChemBioChem, 18(13), 1270-1278. https://doi.org/10.1002/cbic.201700029