Electrophoresis, Vol.42, No.3, 233-244, 2021
Isolation and identification of O- and N-linked glycoproteins in milk from different mammalian species and their roles in biological pathways which support infant growth
Milk serves as the sole nutrition for newborns, as well as a medium for the transfer of immunological components from the mother to the baby. This study reveals different glycoprotein profiles obtained from human, bovine, and caprine milk and their potential roles in supporting infant growth. Proteins from these three milk samples are separated and analyzed using two-dimensional gel electrophoresis (2-DE). Glycosylated proteins from all samples are enriched by affinity chromatography using lectins from the seeds of Artocarpus integer before analysis using LC/MS-QTOF. The glycoproteome profiling demonstrates that glycosylated proteins are higher in caprine milk compared to other samples. Analysis using LC/MS-QTOF identified 42 O-glycosylated and 56 N-glycosylated proteins, respectively. Among those identified, human milk has 17 glycoproteins, which are both O- and N-glycosylated, whereas caprine and bovine have 10 and 1, respectively. Only glycoproteins from human milk have shown positive matching to important human biological pathways, such as vesicle-mediated transport, immune system and hemostasis pathways. Human milk remains unique for human babies with the presence of antibodies in the form of immunoglobulins that are lacking in ruminant milk proteomes.