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Waters and NIBRT Complete Work on World's First UPLC Glycan Database

MILFORD, Mass., Jan. 20, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Waters Corporation (WAT:NYSE) and Ireland's National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training (NIBRT) announced today the availability of the world's first database for glycan analysis by UltraPerformance Liquid Chromatography® (UPLC®). Developed by Professor Pauline Rudd's research team at NIBRT, the new GlycoBase 3+ Database is the first-of-its-kind repository of chromatographic retention positions expressed in glucose units for sets of glycan structures associated with a range of biotherapeutics. Now available for purchase, the database will be co-marketed worldwide by Waters and NIBRT. The announcement came during the 15th annual Well-Characterized Biopharmaceuticals (WCBP) Symposium, Jan. 23 – 25 in San Francisco, California.


The GlycoBase 3+ Database is intended to give biopharmaceutical manufacturers a timely and powerful tool for confirming the structure of various glycosylated proteins. Armed with more rapid and accurate information about glycosylation during the various stages of the manufacturing process, biopharmaceutical manufacturers can gain a greater degree of control over their manufacturing process in line with regulatory guidelines aimed at guaranteeing safe and efficacious biotherapeutics.

Recent advances in chromatographic approaches are leading to better resolution, sensitivity, and speed during the qualitative and quantitative analysis of protein glycosylation. As a proven approach for analyzing biomolecules and the glycan structures attached to them, UPLC is a potent tool for determining the relative proportions of each glycan structure in a pool.  

The Waters® UPLC Glycan Analysis Solution features an ACQUITY UPLC® BEH Glycan Separation Technology column and an ACQUITY UPLC System with fluorescence detection (FLR) to separate the released glycans of biopharmaceuticals as their 2-aminobenzamide (2-AB) derivatives. The UPLC Glycan Separation Solution provides robust, high-resolving, reproducible, and rapid methods that outperform analyses by HPLC.

The combination of NIBRT's database together with the Waters UPLC Glycan Solution can readily assign potential glycan structures - complex, neutral, high-mannose, and sialylated - to each UPLC peak by matching to a dextran hydrolysate ladder (GU values). Exo-glycosidase array digestion products can also be assigned using the same bioinformatics platform, allowing the monosaccharide sequences and linkages of the oligosaccharides to be confirmed. The technology can be tailor-made to confirm structures present in samples analyzed routinely or to identify unknown or unexpected glycans.

In an application note, Waters describes its methodology for glycan analysis by UPLC in greater detail.

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About Waters Corporation (

For over 50 years, Waters Corporation (NYSE: WAT) has created business advantages for laboratory-dependent organizations by delivering practical and sustainable innovation to enable significant advancements in such areas as healthcare delivery, environmental management, food safety, and water quality worldwide.

Pioneering a connected portfolio of separations science, laboratory information management, mass spectrometry and thermal analysis, Waters technology breakthroughs and laboratory solutions provide an enduring platform for customer success.

With revenue of $1.64 billion in 2010 and 5,400 employees, Waters is driving scientific discovery and operational excellence for customers worldwide.

About NIBRT (

NIBRT - National Institute for Bioprocessing Research and Training, Dublin, Ireland is a centre of excellence that supports the biopharma sector by offering research platform solutions for bio-manufacturing and provides tailored accredited industrial training and academic educational programmes to students in purpose-built flexible and modern bioprocessing facilities. For further information please refer to

Waters, UltraPerformance LC, UPLC, ACQUITY UPLC, and ACQUITY are trademarks of Waters Corporation.

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