FUT1 genetic variants impact protein glycosylation of porcine intestinal mucosa

Marianne O. Hesselager, Arun V. Everest-Dass, Morten Thaysen-Andersen, Emøke Bendixen, Nicolle H. Packer*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Citations (Scopus)


A massive use of antibiotics in industrial pig production is a major cause of the rapidly rising bacterial resistance to antibiotics. An enhanced understanding of infectious diseases and of host-microbe interactions has the potential to explore alternative ways to improve pig health and reduce the need for antibiotics. Host-microbe interactions depend on host-expressed glycans and microbe-carrying lectins. In this study, a G > A (nucleotide 307) missense mutation in the porcine α1,2fucosyltransferase 1 gene (FUT1), which has been reported to prevent infections by the common porcine enteric pathogen F18 fimbriated Escherichia coli, provided a unique opportunity to study glycan structures potentially involved in intestinal infections. N- and O-Linked glycans of the intestinal mucosa proteins were characterized in detail using LC-MS/MS. Relative abundances of all glycans were determined and compared between four heterozygous pigs (FUT1-307A/G) and four age-matched homozygous pigs from the same 2 litters carrying the missense FUT1 gene constellation (FUT1-307A/A). None of the characterized 48 N-linked glycans was found to be regulated by the FUT1 missense mutation, while 11 of the O-linked glycans showed significantly altered abundances between the two genotypes. The overall abundance of H-antigen carrying structures was decreased fivefold, while H-antigen precursors and sialylated structures were relatively more abundant in pigs with the FUT1 missense mutation. These results provide insight into the role of FUT1 on intestinal glycosylation, improve our understanding of how variation in FUT1 can modulate host-microbe interactions, and suggest that the FUT1 genetic variant may help to improve pig gut health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)607-622
Number of pages16
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2016


  • Fucose
  • FUT1
  • glycome
  • intestinal mucosa
  • pig genetics


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