Genes involved in the endoplasmic reticulum N-Glycosylation pathway of the red microalga Porphyridium sp. A bioinformatic study

Oshrat Levy-Ontman, Merav Fisher, Yoram Shotland, Yacob Weinstein, Yoram Tekoah, Shoshana Malis Arad

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


N-glycosylation is one of the most important post-translational modifications that influence protein polymorphism, including protein structures and their functions. Although this important biological process has been extensively studied in mammals, only limited knowledge exists regarding glycosylation in algae. The current research is focused on the red microalga Porphyridium sp., which is a potentially valuable source for various applications, such as skin therapy, food, and pharmaceuticals. The enzymes involved in the biosynthesis and processing of N-glycans remain undefined in this species, and the mechanism(s) of their genetic regulation is completely unknown. In this study, we describe our pioneering attempt to understand the endoplasmic reticulum N-Glycosylation pathway in Porphyridium sp., using a bioinformatic approach. Homology searches, based on sequence similarities with genes encoding proteins involved in the ER N-glycosylation pathway (including their conserved parts) were conducted using the TBLASTN function on the algae DNA scaffold contigs database. This approach led to the identification of 24 encoded-genes implicated with the ER N-glycosylation pathway in Porphyridium sp. Homologs were found for almost all known N-glycosylation protein sequences in the ER pathway of Porphyridium sp.; thus, suggesting that the ER-pathway is conserved; as it is in other organisms (animals, plants, yeasts, etc.).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2305-2326
Number of pages22
JournalInternational Journal of Molecular Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - 7 Feb 2014


  • Bioinformatics
  • Contigs
  • Microalgae
  • N-glycosylation
  • Porphyridium sp.
  • Red algae


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