PubChem | Glycans | Symbol Nomenclature for Glycans (SNFG)

Organizations and Publications Adopting SNFG

A universal symbol nomenclature for the graphical representation of glycan structures (SNFG) has been proposed to facilitate the standardization of how glycans are visually depicted (

This page lists current initiatives, databases, journals, societies, or publishers that have thus far accepted or recommend the use of this SNFG nomenclature. Additional adoptions can be reported to Nicolle Packer (, for potential inclusion in future updates to this online listing.

A suggested text for journal "Instructions to Authors" is "The Press/Society/Journal/Database encourages/recommends/requires that all figures depicting glycans with symbols for monosaccharides follow the shapes and colors presented in the current version of the Symbol Nomenclature for Glycans (SNFG) that can be found here. Please cite Glycobiology 25: 1323–1324, 2015. doi: 10.1093/glycob/cwv091 (PMID 26543186) and/or Glycobiology 29: 620-624, 2019. doi:10.1093/glycob/cwz045 (PMID 31184695)."

Standardization Initiatives

IUPAC (International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry):

MIRAGE (Minimum Information Required for a Glycomics Experiment):


Databases and Knowledgebases


Varki A, Cummings RD, Aebi M, Packer NH, Seeberger PH, Esko JD, Stanley P, Hart G, Darvill A, Kinoshita T, Prestegard JJ, Schnaar RL, et al. 2015. Symbol nomenclature for graphical representations of glycans. Glycobiology 25: 1323–1324. (PMID 26543186).

Neelamegham S, Aoki-Kinoshita K, Bolton E, Frank M, Lisacek F, Lütteke T, O'Boyle N, Packer NH, Stanley P, Toukach P, Varki A, Woods RJ and SNFG Discussion Group. Updates to the Symbol Nomenclature for Glycans guidelines. Glycobiology 29: 620-24. (PMID 31184695)