The intestinal MUC2 mucin C-terminus is stabilized by an extra disulfide bond in comparison to von Willebrand factor and other gel-forming mucins.

Gallego P, Garcia-Bonete MJ, Trillo-Muyo S, Recktenwald CV, Johansson MEV, Hansson GC

Nat Commun 14 (1) 1969 [2023-04-08; online 2023-04-08]

The MUC2 mucin polymer is the main building unit of the intestinal mucus layers separating intestinal microbiota from the host epithelium. The MUC2 mucin is a large glycoprotein with a C-terminal domain similar to the MUC5AC and MUC5B mucins and the von Willebrand factor (VWF). A structural model of the C-terminal part of MUC2, MUC2-C, was generated by combining Cryo-electron microscopy, AlphaFold prediction, information of its glycosylation, and small angle X-ray scattering information. The globular VWD4 assembly in the N-terminal of MUC2-C is followed by 3.5 linear VWC domains that form an extended flexible structure before the C-terminal cystine-knot. All gel-forming mucins and VWF form tail-tail disulfide-bonded dimers in their C-terminal cystine-knot domain, but interestingly the MUC2 mucin has an extra stabilizing disulfide bond on the N-terminal side of the VWD4 domain, likely essential for a stable intestinal mucus barrier.

Cryo-EM [Service]

PubMed 37031240

DOI 10.1038/s41467-023-37666-8

Crossref 10.1038/s41467-023-37666-8

pmc: PMC10082768
pii: 10.1038/s41467-023-37666-8

Publications 9.5.0