Localization of the binding sites for the Ricinus communis, Agaricus bisporus and wheat germ lectins on human erythrocyte membranes

Timothy J. Triche, Thomas W. Tillack, Stuart Kornfeld

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Abstract

Freeze-etch electron microscopy has been utilized to localize the binding sites for the Ricinus communis, Agaricus bisporus and wheat germ lectins on human erythrocyte membranes and to determine the relation of these different glycoprotein receptors to the intramembranous particles. A. bisporus lectin, which could be visualized directly on the surface of erythrocyte membranes, and ferritin conjugates of wheat germ agglutinin showed a distribution that correlates exactly with the intramembranous particles at all lectin concentrations tested. The binding sites for both of these lectins are located on the major sialoglycoprotein of the membrane. The R. communis agglutinin-ferritin conjugate which binds to receptors on membrane glycoproteins that are distinct from the major sialoglycoprotein showed a close correlation with the intramembranous particles at low lectin concentrations and a poor correlation at high lectin concentrations. High concentrations resulted in virtually complete coating of the surface of trypsinized ghosts which displayed marked aggregation of the intramembranous particles. We conclude that the intramembranous particles of erythrocyte membranes contain at least two glycoproteins and that some membrane lectin receptors are not associated with the intramembranous particles.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)540-549
Number of pages10
JournalBBA - Biomembranes
Volume394
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 18 1975
Externally publishedYes

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