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PLoS One. 2016 Sep 9;11(9):e0162824. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0162824. eCollection 2016.

Variation of Human Salivary O-Glycome.

Author information

Ludger Ltd., Culham Science Centre, Oxfordshire, United Kingdom.
School of Biomedical Sciences, Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovations, Queensland University of Technology, 60 Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove, Australia.
Centre for Proteomics and Metabolomics Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands.


The study of saliva O-glycosylation is receiving increasing attention due to the potential of glycans for disease biomarkers, but also due to easy access and non-invasive collection of saliva as biological fluid. Saliva is rich in glycoproteins which are secreted from the bloodstream or produced by salivary glands. Mucins, which are highly O-glycosylated proteins, are particularly abundant in human saliva. Their glycosylation is associated with blood group and secretor status, and represents a reservoir of potential disease biomarkers. This study aims to analyse and compare O-glycans released from whole human mouth saliva collected 3 times a day from a healthy individual over a 5 days period. O-linked glycans were released by hydrazinolysis, labelled with procainamide and analysed by ultra-high performance liquid chromatography with fluorescence detection (UHPLC-FLR) coupled to electrospray ionization mass spectrometry (ESI-MS/MS). The sample preparation method showed excellent reproducibility and can therefore be used for biomarker discovery. Our data demonstrates that the O-glycosylation in human saliva changes significantly during the day. These changes may be related to changes in the salivary concentrations of specific proteins.

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Conflict of interest statement

Ludger Ltd is a commercial bioscience company specialising in development and validation of glycoprofiling technology. The following authors declare competing financial interest(s): RPK, PAU, LR, DIS, DLF are employed by Ludger Ltd. In addition, products from Ludger were used in this research. This does not alter the authors' adherence to PLOS ONE policies on sharing data and materials.

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