A bioactive mammalian disaccharide associated with autoimmunity activates STING-TBK1-dependent immune response

Charles S. Fermaintt, Kanae Sano, Zhida Liu, Nozomi Ishii, Junichi Seino, Nicole Dobbs, Tadashi Suzuki, Yang Xin Fu, Mark A. Lehrman, Ichiro Matsuo, Nan Yan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Scopus citations


Glycans from microbial pathogens are well known pathogen-associated molecular patterns that are recognized by the host immunity; however, little is known about whether and how mammalian self-glycans activate the host immune response, especially in the context of autoimmune disease. Using biochemical fractionation and two-dimensional HPLC, we identify an abundant and bioactive free glycan, the Manβ1-4GlcNAc disaccharide in TREX1-associated autoimmune diseases. We report that both monosaccharide residues and the β1-4 linkage are critical for bioactivity of this disaccharide. We also show that Manβ1-4GlcNAc is produced by oligosaccharyltransferase hydrolysis of lipid-linked oligosaccharides in the ER lumen, followed by ENGase and mannosidase processing in the cytosol and lysosomes. Furthermore, synthetic Manβ1-4GlcNAc disaccharide stimulates a broad immune response in vitro, which is in part dependent on the STING-TBK1 pathway, and enhances antibody response in vivo. Together, our data identify Manβ1-4GlcNAc as a novel innate immune modulator associated with chronic autoimmune diseases.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2377
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 1 2019

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)
  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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