Philip E Pummill

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Hyaluronan (HA) is a nonsulfated glycosaminoglycan that has long been known to play structural roles in vertebrates. Recently, it has become increasingly obvious that this linear polysaccharide has many more uses than simply scaffolding or space filler. HA has been found to be involved in development, cell signaling, cell motility, and metastasis. These(More)
We have characterized the hyaluronan (HA) synthase activity of the Xenopus DG42 gene product in vitro. The recombinant enzyme produced in yeast does not possess a nascent HA chain and, therefore, is an ideal model system for kinetic studies of the synthase's glycosyltransferase activity. The enzymatic rate was optimal from pH 7.6 to 8.1. Only the authentic(More)
Hyaluronan (HA), a functionally essential glycosaminoglycan in vertebrate tissues and a putative virulence factor in certain pathogenic bacteria, is an extended linear polymer composed of alternating units of glucuronic acid (GlcUA) and N-acetylglucosamine (GlcNAc). Uncertainty regarding the mechanism of HA biosynthesis has included the directionality of(More)
The density, molecular isoform, and posttranslational modifications of CD44 can markedly influence growth and metastatic behavior of tumors. Many CD44 functions, including some involving tumors, have been attributed to its ability to recognize hyaluronan (HA). However, only certain CD44-bearing cells bind soluble or immobilized HA. We now show that CD44(More)
Hyaluronan (HA), a linear polysaccharide composed of N-acetylglucosamine-glucuronic acid repeats, is found in the extracellular matrix of vertebrate tissues as well as the capsule of several pathogenic bacteria. The HA synthases (HASs) are dual-action glycosyltransferases that catalyze the addition of two different sugars from UDP-linked precursors to the(More)
Presently, the two main commercial sources of hyaluronic acid (HA) are rooster combs and streptococci. Harvesting from rooster combs is complex and costly. Streptococci are difficult to genetically manipulate and require complex media for growth. Both sources have potential problems with unwanted by-products, such as allergens and toxins. These problems can(More)
The hyaluronan (HA) synthases catalyze the addition of two different monosaccharides from UDP-sugar substrates to the linear heteropolysaccharide chain. To accomplish this task, the HA synthases must be able to bind and to transfer from both UDP-sugar substrates. Until now, it has been impossible to distinguish between these two abilities. We have created a(More)
Hyaluronan (HA), a linear polysaccharide composed of beta1,3-GlcNAc-beta1,4-GlcUA repeats, is found in the extracellular matrix of vertebrate tissues as well as the capsule of several pathogenic bacteria. All known HA synthases (HASs) are dual-action glycosyltransferases that catalyze the addition of two different sugars from UDP-linked precursors to the(More)
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