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Undetectable Histone O-GlcNAcylation in Mammalian Cells.

Gagnon J, Daou S, Zamorano N, Ianantuono NV, Hammond-Martel I, Mashtalir N, Bonneil E, Wurtele H, Thibault P, Affar EB

a Maisonneuve-Rosemont Hospital Research Center and Department of Medicine , University of Montréal , Montréal H3C 3J7, Québec , Canada.

O-GlcNAcylation is a posttranslational modification catalyzed by the O-Linked N-acetylglucosamine (O-GlcNAc) transferase (OGT) and reversed by O-GlcNAcase (OGA). Numerous transcriptional regulators, including chromatin modifying enzymes, transcription factors, and co-factors, are targeted by O-GlcNAcylation, indicating that this modification is central for chromatin-associated processes. Recently, OGT-mediated O-GlcNAcylation was reported to be a novel histone modification, suggesting a potential role in directly coordinating chromatin structure and function. In contrast, using multiple biochemical approaches, we report here that histone O-GlcNAcylation is undetectable in mammalian cells. Conversely, O-GlcNAcylation of the transcription regulators Host Cell Factor-1 (HCF-1) and Ten-Eleven Translocation protein 2 (TET2) could be readily observed. Our study raises questions on the occurrence and abundance of O-GlcNAcylation as a histone modification in mammalian cells and reveals technical complications regarding the detection of genuine protein O-GlcNAcylation. Therefore, the identification of the specific contexts in which histone O-GlcNAcylation might occur is still to be established.

Epigenetics 2015:0.

Pubmed ID: 26075789

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