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Glycoconj J. 2013 Feb;30(2):137-46. doi: 10.1007/s10719-012-9443-9. Epub 2012 Aug 26.

Strategies for the profiling, characterisation and detailed structural analysis of N-linked oligosaccharides.

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NIBRT Glycobiology Laboratory, NIBRT - The National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training, Fosters Avenue, Mount Merrion, Blackrock, Co Dublin, Ireland.


Many post-translational modifications, including glycosylation, are pivotal for the structural integrity, location and functional activity of glycoproteins. Sub-populations of proteins that are relocated or functionally changed by such modifications can change resting proteins into active ones, mediating specific effector functions, as in the case of monoclonal antibodies. To ensure safe and efficacious drugs it is essential to employ appropriate robust, quantitative analytical strategies that can (i) perform detailed glycan structural analysis, (ii) characterise specific subsets of glycans to assess known critical features of therapeutic activities (iii) rapidly profile glycan pools for at-line monitoring or high level batch to batch screening. Here we focus on these aspects of glycan analysis, showing how state-of-the-art technologies are required at all stages during the production of recombinant glycotherapeutics. These data can provide insights into processing pathways and suggest markers for intervention at critical control points in bioprocessing and also critical decision points in disease and drug monitoring in patients. Importantly, these tools are now enabling the first glycome/genome studies in large populations, allowing the integration of glycomics into other 'omics platforms in a systems biology context.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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