Protein glycosylation, and in particular N-linked glycans, is a hall mark of Eukaryotic cells and has been well studied in mammalian cells and parasites. However, little research has been conducted to investigate the conservation and variation of protein glycosylation pathways in other eukaryotic organisms. Euglena gracilis is an industrially important microalga, used in the production of biofuels and nutritional supplements. It is evolutionarily highly divergent from green algae and more related to Kinetoplastid pathogens. It was recently shown that E. gracilis possesses the machinery for producing a range of protein glycosylations and make simple N-glycans, but the modified proteins were not identified. This study identifies the glycosylated proteins, including transporters, extra cellular proteases and those involved in cell surface signalling. Notably, many of the most highly expressed and glycosylated proteins are not related to any known sequences and are therefore likely to be involved in important novel functions in Euglena.
O'Neill, E. C. (2023). Glycosylated proteins in the protozoan alga Euglena gracilis: a proteomic approach. FEMS Microbiology Letters, 370, Article fnac120. https://doi.org/10.1093/femsle/fnac120