The nature of the primer for glycogen synthesis in muscle

Joseph Lomako, Wieslawa M. Lomako, William J. Whelan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

27 Scopus citations


We and others have reported that glycogenin, the covalently bound protein found in muscle glycogen, also exists in muscle in a glycogen-free form (Mr, 38 000-39 000) that is autocatalytic, undergoes self-glucosylation and acts as a primer for glycogen synthesis. We now report that this entity is not present in a fresh muscle extract. Instead it exists within a pro form of much higher molecular mass which breaks down spontaneously to the Mr, 38 000-39 000 form. Such breakdown is accelerated by the addition of α-amylase and is prevented by protease inhibitors. Multiple intermediates of the breakdown process have been detected, each capable of undergoing glucosylation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8-12
Number of pages5
JournalFEBS letters
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 30 1990


  • Glycogen biogenesis
  • Glycogenin
  • Protein glucosylation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry
  • Biophysics
  • Molecular Biology


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