With bovine serum albumin as the reference standard, the armadillo salivary-gland glycoprotein, although containing no chromogenic amino acids and only small amounts of colour-yielding peptides [Chou & Goldstein (1960) Biochem. J. 75, 100-115], is highly reactive in the Lowry phenol protein assay [Wu & Pigman (1977) Biochem. J. 161, 37-47]. After desialylation and Smith degradation of the glycoprotein, the Lowry phenol value increased by 13 and 30% respectively, which suggests that both sialic acid and N-acetylhexosamine exert shielding effects in this reaction. Acid hydrolysis for 30 min decreased the Lowry phenol value by more than 45%, which indicates that the peptide linkages and steric features affect the Lowry phenol reactivity. After hydrolysis for up to 6h, the remaining Lowry phenol value of the partially hydrolysed core protein paralleled the amount of unhydrolysed peptides, inferring that both acid-sensitive and acid-resistant chromophoric peptides are fairly evenly distributed along the whole polypeptide chain. As with bovine serum albumin, more than 80% of the colour yield obtained in the Lowry phenol assay with this glycoprotein is Cu2+-dependent.

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