We have previously shown that the cholecystokinin (CCK)-binding proteins in rat pancreatic plasma membranes consist of a major Mr 85,000 and minor Mr 55,000 and Mr 130,000 species as revealed by affinity labeling with 125I-CCK-33 using the cross-linker, disuccinimidyl suberate. The glycoprotein nature of these species was investigated using endoglycosidase F (endo F) and neuraminidase treatment and wheat germ agglutinin-agarose chromatography. Treatment of affinity-labeled membranes with endo F resulted in increased electrophoretic mobilities of all three binding proteins, indicating removal of N-linked oligosaccharide side chains. Endo F treatment of each protein in gel slices indicated the following cleavage relationships: Mr 85,000----65,000; Mr 55,000----45,000; Mr 130,000----110,000. Using limiting enzyme conditions to digest each protein contained in excised SDS gel slices, three and four products, respectively, were identified for the Mr 85,000 and 55,000 proteins. Similar treatment of the Mr 130,000 protein revealed only the Mr 110,000 product. These results indicated that the Mr 85,000 protein has at least three, the Mr 55,000 protein has at least four, and the Mr 130,000 protein has at least one, N-linked oligosaccharide side chain(s) on their polypeptide backbone. Neuraminidase treatment of affinity-labeled membranes caused slight increases in the electrophoretic mobilities of all three proteins, indicating the presence of sialic acid residues. Solubilization of affinity-labeled membranes in Nonidet P-40 followed by affinity chromatography on wheat germ agglutinin-agarose revealed that all three CCK-binding proteins specifically interact with this lectin and can be eluted with N-acetyl-D-glucosamine. Analysis of the proteins present in the eluted fractions by silver staining indicated a significant enrichment for proteins having molecular weights corresponding to the major CCK-binding proteins in comparison to the pattern of native membranes. Taken together, these studies provide definitive evidence that the CCK-binding proteins in rat pancreas are (sialo)glycoproteins.

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