New Technologies for Glycomic Analysis: Toward a Systematic Understanding of the Glycome
Carbohydrates are the most difficult class of biological molecules to study by high-throughput methods owing to the chemical similarities between the constituent monosaccharide building blocks, template-less biosynthesis, and the lack of clearly identifiable consensus sequences for the glycan modification of cohorts of glycoproteins. These molecules are crucial for a wide variety of cellular processes ranging from cell-cell communication to immunity, and they are altered in disease states such as cancer and inflammation. Thus, there has been a dedicated effort to develop glycan analysis into a high-throughput analytical field termed glycomics. Herein we highlight major advances in applying separation, mass spectrometry, and microarray methods to the fields of glycomics and glycoproteomics. These new analytical techniques are rapidly advancing our understanding of the importance of glycosylation in biology and disease.
Rakus, J. F., & Mahal, L. K. (2011). New technologies for glycomic analysis: Toward a systematic understanding of the glycome. Annual Review of Analytical Chemistry, 4, 367-392.