Bacterial glycosyltransferase-mediated cell-surface chemoenzymatic glycan modification

Senlian Hong, Yujie Shi, Nicholas C. Wu, Geramie Grande, Lacey Douthit, Hua Wang, Wen Zhou, K. Barry Sharpless, Ian A. Wilson, Jia Xie, Peng Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Chemoenzymatic modification of cell-surface glycan structures has emerged as a complementary approach to metabolic oligosaccharide engineering. Here, we identify Pasteurella multocida α2-3-sialyltransferase M144D mutant, Photobacterium damsela α2-6-sialyltransferase, and Helicobacter mustelae α1-2-fucosyltransferase, as efficient tools for live-cell glycan modification. Combining these enzymes with Helicobacter pylori α1-3-fucosyltransferase, we develop a host-cell-based assay to probe glycan-mediated influenza A virus (IAV) infection including wild-type and mutant strains of H1N1 and H3N2 subtypes. At high NeuAcα2-6-Gal levels, the IAV-induced host-cell death is positively correlated with haemagglutinin (HA) binding affinity to NeuAcα2-6-Gal. Remarkably, an increment of host-cell-surface sialyl Lewis X (sLe X ) exacerbates the killing by several wild-type IAV strains and a previously engineered mutant HK68-MTA. Structural alignment of HAs from HK68 and HK68-MTA suggests formation of a putative hydrogen bond between Trp222 of HA-HK68-MTA and the C-4 hydroxyl group of the α1-3-linked fucose of sLe X , which may account for the enhanced host cell killing of that mutant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1799
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


Dive into the research topics of 'Bacterial glycosyltransferase-mediated cell-surface chemoenzymatic glycan modification'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this