Navigation Links
Sweet! Glycoconjugates are more than the sum of their sugars
Date:8/25/2014

There's a certain type of biomolecule built like a nano-Christmas tree. Called a glycoconjugate, it's many branches are bedecked with sugary ornaments.

It's those ornaments that get all the glory. That's because, according to conventional wisdom, the glycoconjugate's lowly "tree" basically holds the sugars in place as they do the important work of reacting with other molecules.

Now a chemist at Michigan Technological University has discovered that the tree itselfcalled the scaffoldis a good deal more than a simple prop.

"We had always thought that all the biological function resides in the sugar," said Tarun Dam, principal investigator of the Mechanistic Glycobiology Lab at Michigan Tech. "People didn't appreciate that the scaffolds were active."

The discovery opens up new avenues for research, in particular the development of more and better pharmaceuticals. Glycoconjugates are found naturally in the body, but they are also an important class of drugs that includes anything from cancer treatments to vaccines.

To determine if the scaffold had a role to play in biological reactions, Dam and his team built and tested two types of glycoconjugate molecules. They had the same sugars and virtually identical shapes but were comprised of different scaffolds, one made of protein, the other a synthetic. The scientists then tested how the different glycoconjugates reacted with biomolecules called lectins. Lectins play an important role in numerous biological processes and are a target for many glycoconjugate drugs.

If the scaffolds had been inert, the reactions would have been identical. However, the sugars on the protein scaffold reacted with the lectins differently.

"If the scaffolds are different, they can cause my drug to work one way and your drug to work another way, even though they have similar epitopes [sugars]," Dam said. "Tweaking the scaffold can change the drug's function."


'/>"/>

Contact: Marcia Goodrich
mtunews@mtu.edu
906-487-2343
Michigan Technological University
Source:Eurekalert  

Page: 1

Related biology news :

1. Sweet! Glycocongugates are more than the sum of their sugars
2. 2 servings of salmon a week is healthy for pregnant women and their babies
3. Study finds peoples niceness may reside in their genes
4. Lizard moms may prepare their babies for a stressful world
5. Deterring signals: Tobacco plants advertise their defensive readiness to attacking leafhoppers
6. Vampire jumping spiders identify victims by their antennae
7. New Tool Helps Drug Developers Optimize Their Research and Target Development for Better Results and a Stronger Competitive Edge
8. Parasitic plants steal genes from their hosts
9. Cougars are re-populating their historical range, new study confirms
10. Research: Many programs to help diabetics manage their health do work
11. Better looking birds have more help at home with their chicks
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Sweet! Glycoconjugates are more than the sum of their sugars
(Date:11/17/2016)... , Nov. 17, 2016 Global Market Watch: ... Public Biobanks (Disease-Based Banks, Population-Based Banks and Academics) market is ... analysis for Private Biobanks shows the highest Compounded Annual Growth ... region during the analysis period 2014-2020. ... CAGR of 9.95% followed by Europe ...
(Date:11/16/2016)... SANTA CLARA, Calif. , Nov. 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... company enhancing user experience and security for consumer ... provider for the financial and retail industry, today ... more secure and convenient way to authenticate users ... now uses Sensory,s TrulySecure™ software which ...
(Date:11/15/2016)... , Nov 15, 2016 Research and ... Global Forecast to 2021" report to their offering. ... ... USD 16.18 Billion by 2021 from USD 6.21 Billion in 2016, ... Growth of the bioinformatics market is driven by the ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:12/8/2016)... 8, 2016 Oxford Gene Technology ... SureSeq™ NGS panel range with the launch of the SureSeq ... study of variants in familial hypercholesterolemia (FH). The panel delivers ... on a single small panel and allows customisation by ,mix ... all exons for LDLR , P C ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , ... December 08, 2016 , ... ... in the World Technology Awards. uBiome is one of just six company finalists ... categories. , In addition to uBiome, companies nominated as finalists in this year’s ...
(Date:12/8/2016)... , Dec. 8, 2016  HedgePath Pharmaceuticals, ... that discovers, develops and plans to commercialize innovative ... shares of common stock were approved for trading ... begin trading on the OTCQX, effective today, under ... for the OTCQX market, companies must meet high ...
(Date:12/8/2016)...   Biocept, Inc . (NASDAQ: ... actionable liquid biopsy tests to improve the management ... its Target Selector™ Circulating Tumor Cell platform demonstrated ... of actionable biomarkers in patients with metastatic breast ... Cannon Research Institute (SCRI), the research arm of ...
Breaking Biology Technology: