N-Linked Glycosylation-Dependent and -Independent Mechanisms Regulating CTRP12 Cleavage, Secretion, and Stability.

C1q/TNF-related protein 12 (CTRP12) is a secreted regulator of glucose and lipid metabolism. It circulates in plasma as a full-length protein or as a cleaved isoform generated by furin/PCSK3 cleavage. These isoforms preferentially activate different signaling pathways, and their ratio in plasma is altered in obesity and diabetes. Here, we show that three conserved asparagine residues (Asn-39, Asn-287, and Asn-297) play important roles in modulating CTRP12 cleavage, secretion, and stability. Mass spectrometry analysis provided direct evidence of Asn-39 glycosylation. When N-linked glycosylation was inhibited by tunicamycin or abolished by the N39Q, N39A, or T41A mutation, CTRP12 cleavage was enhanced. Complex-type N-glycans on CTRP12 blocked cleavage by the Golgi-localized furin. In N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase I (GnTI)-deficient cells that could not form hybrid and complex-type N-glycans in the Golgi, CTRP12 cleavage was enhanced, and re-expressing GnTI reduced cleavage. Replacing the nonglycosylated Asn-297 with glutamine or alanine also increased CTRP12 cleavage. Both Asn-39 and Asn-297 contributed independently to CTRP12 cleavage: maximum cleavage was observed in the double mutant. In addition, CTRP12 cleavage was abolished in furin-deficient cells and restored by furin re-expression. Replacing the nonglycosylated Asn-287 with glutamine or alanine resulted in protein misfolding and aggregation, leading to retention in the endoplasmic reticulum. Cycloheximide chase analyses indicated reduced protein stability for N39Q, T41A, and N297Q mutants. Lastly, we show that increasing the flux through the hexosamine biosynthesis pathway by exogenous glucosamine, known to disrupt protein glycosylation, also promoted CTRP12 cleavage. Combined, these data highlight glycosylation-dependent and -independent mechanisms regulating CTRP12 cleavage, secretion, and protein stability.


Biochemistry, 2019, 58 (6)

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