Degradation and Conversion of Blood Group Antigens in Saliva

혈액형 항원의 분해와 변환에 관한 연구

  • Lim, Sang-Wook (Department of Oral Medicine & Oral Diagnosis, College of Dentistry, Seoul National University) ;
  • Park, Hee-Kyung (Section of Forensic Dentistry, Department of Forensic Medicine, National Institute of Scientific Investigation) ;
  • Jung, Seung-Eun (Department of Oral Medicine & Oral Diagnosis, College of Dentistry, Seoul National University) ;
  • Kho, Hong-Seop (Department of Oral Medicine & Oral Diagnosis, College of Dentistry, Seoul National University) ;
  • Kim, Young-Ku (Department of Oral Medicine & Oral Diagnosis, College of Dentistry, Seoul National University)
  • 임상욱 (서울대학교 치과대학 구강내과진단학교실) ;
  • 박희경 (국립과학수사연구소 법의학과 법치의학실) ;
  • 정승은 (서울대학교 치과대학 구강내과진단학교실) ;
  • 고홍섭 (서울대학교 치과대학 구강내과진단학교실) ;
  • 김영구 (서울대학교 치과대학 구강내과진단학교실)
  • Published : 2005.03.30

Abstract

Mucin glycoproteins are the primary carriers of the oligosaccharide moieties that constitute the blood group substances in human saliva. The aim of this study was to determine whether or not the conversion of either the A or B blood group antigens to the H antigen can occur during the degradation process of stored saliva samples. Forty subjects (20 subjects in each A and B blood group) identified as secretors were enrolled in this study. Fresh whole saliva samples and their clarified supernatants were stored at room temperature for 1 week. The conversion of the blood group antigens was detected by SDS-PAGE and immunoblotting. Among the subjects showing the conversion in whole saliva, glandular saliva samples were obtained from 8 subjects (4 subjects in each A and B blood group). Submandibular-sublingual saliva (SMSL) and a mixture of SMSL and parotid saliva (PS) were stored at room temperature for 1 week. The conversion of the blood group antigens was detected by the same method. The obtained results were as follows: 1. In the clarified samples of whole saliva, the A antigen was detected as being either intact (5%) or degraded molecules (95%) after the 1 week period. Conversion of the A antigen to the H antigen was detected in 5 subjects (25%). In the unclarified samples, the A antigen was either detected as degraded molecules (90%) or was not detected (10%). Conversion of the antigen had occurred in 4 subjects (20%). 2. In the clarified samples of whole saliva, the B antigen was detected as intact (20%) or as degraded molecules (65%) or was not detected (15%) after the 1 week period. Conversion of the B antigen to the H antigen was detected in 7 subjects (35%). In the unclarified samples, the B antigen was detected as intact (5%) or as degraded molecules (65%), or was not detected (30%). Conversion of the antigen was observed in 2 subjects (10%). 3. In the glandular saliva samples, only one of the four subjects displayed an antigenic conversion from the A to H antigen or from the B to H antigen. The conversion had occurred in both the SMSL samples and the SMSL and PS mixture. No degradation of the antigens was detected in the other three samples of the A or B blood groups, nor was there any conversion. The results demonstrated that conversion of the blood group antigens could occur in saliva, and suggested that the enzymes responsible for the conversion are present in saliva. Further studies on the origin and activity of the specific glycosidases in saliva as well as quantitative measurements of the antigenic conversion will be needed.

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