49 Scopus citations


Membrane cofactor protein (MCP; CD46) is a type 1 membrane glycoprotein that inhibits complement activation on host cells. It also is a measles virus (MV) receptor, an adherence factor for group A Streptococcus pyogenes, and a cellular pilus receptor for pathogenic Neisseria. The amino terminus of MCP consists of four complement control protein (CCP) repeats, three of which (CCP-1, -2, and -4) possess N-glycans. Immediately following the CCP modules is an alternatively spliced region for extensive O-glycosylation (termed the STP domain). Previous studies established that the N-glycan of CCP-2 essential for MV binding and infection and that the splicing variants of the STP domain not only affect MV binding and fusion, but also differentially protect against complement-mediated cytolysis. In this report, we dissect the role of these carbohydrates on complement regulatory function. We constructed, expressed, and characterized proteins deleting these carbohydrates. For MCP-mediated protection against cytolysis, the N-glycans of CCP-2 and -4 were necessary, the STP segment influenced but was not essential, and the N-glycan of CCP-1 was not required. In addition, the rate and magnitude of cell surface cleavage of C4b to C4c and C4d by MCP and factor I correlated with cytoprotection. These studies expand the structure- function understanding of the active sites of MCP and elucidate an important role for carbohydrates in its function, a finding consistent with their conservation in the MCP of other species.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3711-3718
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Immunology
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 1 1998


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