International Journal of Hematology

, Volume 108, Issue 2, pp 139–144 | Cite as

Effects of plasma glycosyltransferase on the ABO(H) blood group antigens of human von Willebrand factor

  • Taiki Kano
  • Kazunao Kondo
  • Jiharu Hamako
  • Fumio Matsushita
  • Kazuya Sakai
  • Taei MatsuiEmail author
Original Article


Von Willebrand factor (VWF) is one of the plasma protein carrying ABO(H) blood group antigens, but the combining process of these antigens is not clear. In the present study, we examined whether plasma glycosyltransferase affects the blood group antigens on VWF. VWF expressing H-antigen (H-VWF) from blood group O and bovine serum albumin conjugated with H-antigen (H-BSA) were incubated with recombinant α1-3-N-acetylgalactosaminyltransferase (rA-transferase) and A-plasma with or without an additional UDP-GalNAc. Transformed antigens were detected by western blotting and ELISA, using an anti-A antibody. Both H-VWF and H-BSA acquired the A-antigen after incubation with rA-transferase and UDP-GalNAc. Incubation with A-plasma very weakly converted the H-antigen on BSA and VWF to A-antigen only in the presence of supplemented UDP-GalNAc. This conversion was enhanced on desialylation of H-VWF. These results indicate that sugar chains of plasma VWF can be modified by the external glycosyltransferase, but that plasma glycosyltransferase has no effect on the blood group antigens of VWF due to its low activity and the lack of donor sugars. Further, sialic acid residues of VWF may exert a protective effect against post-translational glycosylation. Our results clearly exclude the possibility that blood group antigens of VWF are constructed extracellularly in plasma.


von Willebrand factor ABO blood group Plasma Glycosyltransferase Sugar nucleotide 



This work was supported by Grant-in-Aid for Scientific Research (C) (Grant number 25461463 to TM) from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© The Japanese Society of Hematology 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Fujita Health University Graduate School of MedicineToyoakeJapan
  2. 2.Department of Pharmacology, School of MedicineFujita Health UniversityToyoakeJapan
  3. 3.Department of Physiology, Faculty of Medical Management and Information Science, School of Health SciencesFujita Health UniversityToyoakeJapan
  4. 4.Department of Biology, Faculty of Rehabilitation, School of Health SciencesFujita Health UniversityToyoakeJapan
  5. 5.Department of Blood Transfusion MedicineNara Medical UniversityKashiharaJapan
  6. 6.Department of Biology, Faculty of Medical Technology, School of Health SciencesFujita Health UniversityToyoakeJapan

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