A proteoglycan purified from 4 M-guanidinium chloride extracts of bovine periodontal ligament closely resembled that of bovine skin, except for a rather lower protein content and a higher molecular weight (120 000 compared with about 90 000) by sodium dodecyl sulphate/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis. The latter difference was explained by the molecular weights (29 000 and 16 000) of the respective dermatan sulphate components, each of which was rich in L-iduronate (about 75% of the total hexuronate). Significant amounts of other glycosaminoglycans did not occur in these proteoglycans, which were homogenous on gel chromatography and agarose/polyacrylamide-gel electrophoresis. Polydispersity was observed in sedimentation equilibrium experiments, but proteolysis or self-association of the proteodermatan sulphates may have affected these results. Ligament proteoglycans that were almost completely extracted with 0.1 M-NaCl contained less protein of a completely different amino acid composition than the proteodermatan sulphates. They were heterogeneous in size but generally smaller than cartilage proteoglycans and L-iduronate was a component, comprising about 7% of the total hexuronate of the sulphated galactosaminoglycan chains. The latter consisted of two fractions differing in molecular weight, but a dermatan sulphate with a high L-iduronate content was not present. These proteoglycans had some resemblance to D-glucuronate-rich proteoglycans of other non-cartilaginous tissues. Such compounds, however, are difficult to categorize at present.
- © 1982 London: The Biochemical Society