A systematic method for 13C labeling of the glycan of immunoglobulin G for NMR study has been developed. A mouse immunoglobulin of subclass IgG2b has been used for the experiment. On the basis of chemical shift and linewidth data, it has been concluded that (1) the mobility of the carbohydrate chain in IgG2b is comparable to that of the backbone polypeptide chain with the exception of the galactose residue at the nonreducing end of the Manα1-3 branch, which is extremely mobile and (2) agalactosylation does not induce any significant change in the mobility. The results obtained indicate that even in the agalactosyl form the glycans are buried in the protein. Biological significance of the NMR results obtained is also briefly discussed.
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