Academic article

Sulfated glycosaminoglycans in the extracellular matrix of muscle tissue in Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua) and Spotted wolffish (Anarhichas minor)

Tingbø, Monica Gausdal; Kolset, Svein Olav; Ofstad, Ragni; Enersen, Grethe; Hannesson, Kirsten O.

Publication details

Journal: Comparative Biochemistry and Physiology - Part B: Biochemistry & Molecular Biology, vol. 140, p. 349–357, 2005

Publisher: Elsevier

International Standard Numbers:
Printed: 1096-4959
Electronic: 1879-1107

Open Access: none


Two species of commercially important cold water fish were investigated for content of sulfated glycosaminoglycans (GAGs) in muscle tissue by use of in vivo 35S-sulfate labeling combined with different digestions (papain, chondroitinase ABC, keratanase and nitrous acid treatment), DEAE chromatography, SDS–PAGE and histology techniques. The species investigated in this study have different gaping properties. The non-gaping species, spotted wolffish (Anarhichas minor), contained 3–4 times more 35S-sulfated anionic components than the gaping species, Atlantic cod (Gadus morhua). The higher level of sulfation in wolffish was supported by light microscopy studies using Alcian blue staining with different concentrations of MgCl2 as critical electrolyte. Furthermore, the muscular connective tissue in the non-gaping species was dominated by chondroitin sulfate (CS)/dermatan sulfate (DS), whereas the gaping species was more dominated by heparan sulfate (HS). Moreover, structural differences were observed in the junctions between the myofibers, which were more pronounced in the wolffish. The histological studies revealed that the basement membrane area was rich in acidic mucopolysaccharides in both species.