The availability of glucose to CHO cells affects the intracellular lipid-linked oligosaccharide distribution, site occupancy and the N-glycosylation profile of a monoclonal antibody
The glycosylation pattern of a chimeric heavy chain antibody (EG2) produced from CHO cells was affected by the glucose concentration (0-25 mM) of cultures established at high density (>106 cells/ml) over 24 h. The resulting proportion of non-glycosylated Mab was directly correlated to the exposure time of cells to media depleted of glucose. Deprivation of glucose for the full 24 h resulted in a 52% non-glycosylated Mab fraction. Analysis of steady state levels of intracellular lipid-linked oligosaccharides (LLOs) showed that under glucose limitation there was a reduction in the amount of full length LLO (Glc3Man9GlcNac2), with a concomitant increase in the smaller mannosyl-glycans (Man2-5GlcNAc2). Glycan microheterogeneity was quantified by galactosylation and sialylation indices (GI and SI), which showed a direct correlation to the cell specific glucose uptake. These findings are important in relation to the low substrate that may occur in fed-batch cultures for Mab production.