Glycomics

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Glycomics

Glycomics

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Understanding the complex structure and the functions of carbohydrate molecules is one of the challenges that chemical biologists have faced.  It is widely believed that a concrete understanding of the complex carbohydrate structure would be used not only in the biochemistry research field but also in related medical field (Seeberger, 2009).  The prospective understanding of carbohydrate structure lies in glycomic field (Turnbull & Field, 2007).  Glycomics field is undergoing rapid development due to advance in technologies used for analyzing glycan structure that have helped to unravel the glycan- protein interactions and significantly establish the functions of glycans (Srivastava, 2008).  Glycobiology filed encompass determination of the structure and the function of complex sugars or gyclans (Seeberger, 2009).  It is a growing section of the postgenome science particularly in reference to proteomics because proteins are modified by glycosylation and these modifications are important in regulating and altering biological activities. For example changes in the glycosylation of proteins and even lipids have been reported in different diseases including cancer (Shriver, Raguram & Sasisekharan, 2004). This means that glycans represent an important class of post-translational modifications, which enhances the function of diversity proteins.  In this regard, the attention of glycomics has been turned to understand of glycan and the concept of glycome which represents complex set of glycan structures as expressed in specific cells, tissues and organisms (Ratner, Adams, Disney & Seeberger, 2004).