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Effects of Size and Geographical Origin on Atlantic salmon, Salmo salar, Mucin O-Glycan Repertoire

Journal article
Authors John Benktander
Vignes Venkatakrishnan
János T Padra
Henrik Sundh
Kristina Sundell
Abarna V M Murugan
B. Maynard
Sara K. Lindén
Published in Molecular & Cellular Proteomics
Volume 18
Issue 6
Pages 1183-1196
ISSN 1535-9476
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Biological and Environmental Sciences
Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Pages 1183-1196
Language en
Keywords sea bream, mucus, skin, ion, oligosaccharides, expression, diversity, system, cells, fish, Biochemistry & Molecular Biology
Subject categories Environmental Sciences, Zoology


Diseases cause ethical concerns and economic losses in the Salmonid industry. The mucus layer comprised of highly O-glycosylated mucins is the first contact between pathogens and fish. Mucin glycans govern pathogen adhesion, growth and virulence. The Atlantic salmon O-glycome from a single location has been characterized and the interindividual variation was low. Because interindividual variation is considered a population-based defense, hindering the entire population from being wiped out by a single infection, low interindividual variation among Atlantic salmon may be a concern. Here, we analyzed the O-glycome of 25 Atlantic salmon from six cohorts grown under various conditions from Sweden, Norway and Australia (Tasmania) using mass spectrometry. This expanded the known Atlantic salmon O-glycome by 60% to 169 identified structures. The mucin O-glycosylation was relatively stable over time within a geographical region, but the size of the fish affected skin mucin glycosylation. The skin mucin glycan repertoires from Swedish and Norwegian Atlantic salmon populations were closely related compared with Tasmanian ones, regardless of size and salinity, with differences in glycan size and composition. The internal mucin glycan repertoire also clustered based on geographical origin and into pyloric cecal and distal intestinal groups, regardless of cohort and fish size. Fucosylated structures were more abundant in Tasmanian pyloric caeca and distal intestine mucins compared with Swedish ones. Overall, Tasmanian Atlantic salmon mucins have more O-glycan structures in skin but less in the gastrointestinal tract compared with Swedish fish. Low interindividual variation was confirmed within each cohort. The results can serve as a library for identifying structures of importance for host-pathogen interactions, understanding population differences of salmon mucin glycosylation in resistance to diseases and during breeding and selection of strains. The results could make it possible to predict potential vulnerabilities to diseases and suggest that inter-region breeding may increase the glycan diversity.

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