Glycoconjugate Journal

, 26:935 | Cite as

Assays of sialate-O-acetyltransferases and sialate-O-acetylesterases

  • G. Vinayaga Srinivasan
  • Roland SchauerEmail author


The O-acetylation of sialic acids is one of the most frequent modifications of these monosaccharides and modulates many cell biological and pathological events. Sialic acid-specific O-acetyltransferases and O-acetylesterases are responsible for the metabolism of esterified sialic acids. Assays were developed for the analysis of the activities and specificities of these enzymes. The methods had to be varied in dependence on the substrate assayed, the kind of biological source, and the state of enzyme purity. With the new techniques the primary site of O-acetyl incorporation at C-7, catalyzed by the animal sialate-O-acetyltransferases studied, was ascertained. Correspondingly, this enzyme, for example from bovine submandibular gland, can be denominated as AcCoA:sialate-7-O-acetyltransferase (EC Methods for assaying the activity of esterases de-O-acetylating sialic acids and their metabolic cooperation with the O-acetyltransferases are presented.


Sialic acids O-acetylated O-Acetyltransferases O-Acetylesterases Thin-layer chromatography High-performance liquid chromatography Radiometry Colorimetry 



We thank Dr. Reinhard Schwartz-Albiez and Dirk Wipfler, Heidelberg, for a sample of human lymphocytes, Dr. Reinhard Vlasak, Salzburg, for influenza C viruses, Dr. Bernhard Kniep, Dresden, for O-acetylated GD3 and Dr. Guido Kohla, Hannover, for technical advice. This work was performed with a grant from Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (Scha 202/33-1) and support by the Sialic Acids Society, Kiel.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Biochemisches InstitutChristian-Albrechts-UniversitätKielGermany

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