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Glycobiology. 2006 Oct;16(10):938-46. Epub 2006 Jun 16.

Lectindb: a plant lectin database.

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Bioinformatics Centre and Supercomputer Education and Research Centre, Raman Building, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore 560 012, Karnataka, India.


Lectins, a class of carbohydrate-binding proteins, are now widely recognized to play a range of crucial roles in many cell-cell recognition events triggering several important cellular processes. They encompass different members that are diverse in their sequences, structures, binding site architectures, quaternary structures, carbohydrate affinities, and specificities as well as their larger biological roles and potential applications. It is not surprising, therefore, that the vast amount of experimental data on lectins available in the literature is so diverse, that it becomes difficult and time consuming, if not impossible to comprehend the advances in various areas and obtain the maximum benefit. To achieve an effective use of all the data toward understanding the function and their possible applications, an organization of these seemingly independent data into a common framework is essential. An integrated knowledge base ( Lectindb, ) together with appropriate analytical tools has therefore been developed initially for plant lectins by collating and integrating diverse data. The database has been implemented using MySQL on a Linux platform and web-enabled using PERL-CGI and Java tools. Data for each lectin pertain to taxonomic, biochemical, domain architecture, molecular sequence, and structural details as well as carbohydrate and hence blood group specificities. Extensive links have also been provided for relevant bioinformatics resources and analytical tools. Availability of diverse data integrated into a common framework is expected to be of high value not only for basic studies in lectin biology but also for basic studies in pursuing several applications in biotechnology, immunology, and clinical practice, using these molecules.

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