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AGR2, an endoplasmic reticulum protein, is secreted into the gastrointestinal mucus.

Journal article
Authors Joakim H. Bergström
Katarina A Berg
Ana María Rodríguez-Piñeiro
Bärbel Stecher
Malin E V Johansson
Gunnar C. Hansson
Published in PloS one
Volume 9
Issue 8
Pages e104186
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication year 2014
Published at Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Medical Biochemistry and Cell Biology
Pages e104186
Language en
Subject categories Cell and Molecular Biology


The MUC2 mucin is the major constituent of the two mucus layers in colon. Mice lacking the disulfide isomerase-like protein Agr2 have been shown to be more susceptible to colon inflammation. The Agr2(-/-) mice have less filled goblet cells and were now shown to have a poorly developed inner colon mucus layer. We could not show AGR2 covalently bound to recombinant MUC2 N- and C-termini as have previously been suggested. We found relatively high concentrations of Agr2 in secreted mucus throughout the murine gastrointestinal tract, suggesting that Agr2 may play extracellular roles. In tissue culture (CHO-K1) cells, AGR2 is normally not secreted. Replacement of the single Cys in AGR2 with Ser (C81S) allowed secretion, suggesting that modification of this Cys might provide a mechanism for circumventing the KTEL endoplasmic reticulum retention signal. In conclusion, these results suggest that AGR2 has both intracellular and extracellular effects in the intestine.

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