To investigate the biosynthesis of the glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI) anchor in the granulocytes of paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH), the glycolipids of granulocytes from PNH patients and normal volunteers were biosynthetically labeled with [3H]mannose in the presence of tunicamycin. Extracted glycolipids were examined by thin-layer chromatography and compared with known biosynthetic intermediates. Normal granulocytes consistently showed [3H]mannose incorporation into the complete GPI core, several GPI biosynthetic intermediates, and dolichol phosphate mannose (DPM). The granulocytes of 10 patients with PNH that had no expression of CD55 and CD59 on greater than 95% of the cells were able to incorporate [3H]mannose into DPM, but were not able to incorporate detectable amounts into the complete GPI core. Thus, PNH granulocytes do not synthesize detectable amounts of the complete GPI core and this defect likely accounts for the absence of GPI- linked membrane proteins on hematopoietic cells in this syndrome.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cell Biology