A cDNA that encodes UDP-N-acetyl-D-glucosamine (GlcNAc):GlcNAcβ1-6(GlcNAcβ1-2)Manα1-R[GlcNAc to Man]β1,4N-acetylglucosaminyltransferase VI (GnT VI), which is responsible for the formation of pentaantennary asparagine-linked oligosaccharides (N-glycans), has been cloned from a hen oviduct cDNA library based on the partial amino acid sequences of the purified enzyme. The isolated cDNA clone contained an open reading frame encoding 464 amino acids, including all of the peptides that were sequenced. The deduced amino acid sequence predicts a type II transmembrane topology and contains two potential N-glycosylation sites. The primary structure was found to be significantly similar to human GnT IV-homologue, the gene for which was cloned from the deleted region in pancreatic cancer, and to human and bovine GnT IVs. Chicken GnT VI-transfected COS-1 cells showed a high GnT VI activity (26.8 pmol/h/mg protein), whereas nontransfected, mocktransfected, or human GnT IV-homologue-transfected COS-1 cells had no activity. Northern blot analysis using poly(A)+ RNA from hen oviduct indicated that the size of GnT VI mRNA is 2.1 kilobases. Reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction analysis showed that GnT VI mRNA was relatively highly expressed in oviduct, spleen, lung, and colon.