Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 16204227
J. Biol. Chem. 2005 Dec;280(48):39835-42
Galactomannan is a characteristic polysaccharide of the human filamentous fungal pathogen Aspergillus fumigatus that can be used to diagnose invasive aspergillosis. In this study, we report the isolation of a galactomannan fraction associated to membrane preparations from A. fumigatus mycelium by a lipid anchor. Specific chemical and enzymatic degradations and mass spectrometry analysis showed that the lipid anchor is a glycosylphosphatidylinositol (GPI). The lipid part is an inositol phosphoceramide containing mainly C18-phytosphingosine and monohydroxylated lignoceric acid (2OH-C(24:0) fatty acid). GPI glycan is a tetramannose structure linked to a glucosamine residue: Manalpha1-2Manalpha1-2Manalpha1-6Manalpha1-4GlcN. The galactomannan polymer is linked to the GPI structure through the mannan chain. The GPI structure is a type 1, closely related to the one previously described for the GPI-anchored proteins of A. fumigatus. This is the first time that a fungal polysaccharide is shown to be GPI-anchored.