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Characterization of the furin cleavage motif for HIV-1 trimeric envelope glycoprotein by intact LC-MS analysis

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Abstract

Generating a soluble and native-like trimeric envelope glycoprotein (Env) with high efficacy as an immunogen has been a major focus for developing an effective vaccine against HIV-1. The Env immunogen is a heavily glycosylated protein composed of 3 identical surface gp120 and gp41 subunits that form into a trimer of heterodimers (3 × 28 N-glycan sites). During Env immunogen production, endogenous furin works to cleave a hexa-arginine motif connecting the gp120 and gp41 subunits, which is needed to ensure proper protein folding and a native-like conformation of Env. Verification of the overall identity and proteolytic cleavage of Env is therefore important for HIV-1 vaccine development and product quality. Herein, we report the first work using LC-MS to (1) achieve fast and accurate intact mass measurement of Env after deglycosylation and (2) confidently identify the furin cleavage sites.

Graphical abstract: Characterization of the furin cleavage motif for HIV-1 trimeric envelope glycoprotein by intact LC-MS analysis

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Article information


Submitted
20 Oct 2019
Accepted
30 Dec 2019
First published
02 Jan 2020

Analyst, 2020, Advance Article
Article type
Communication

Characterization of the furin cleavage motif for HIV-1 trimeric envelope glycoprotein by intact LC-MS analysis

N. A. Schneck, V. B. Ivleva, C. X. Cai, J. W. Cooper and Q. P. Lei, Analyst, 2020, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9AN02098E

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