Characterizing the glycome of the mammalian immune system

Haslam, S M and Julien, S and Burchell, J M and Monk, C R and Ceroni, A and Garden, O A and Dell, A (2008) Characterizing the glycome of the mammalian immune system. Immunology & Cell Biology, 86 (7). pp. 564-573.

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Abstract

The outermost layer of all immune cells, the glycocalyx, is composed of a complex mixture of glycoproteins, glycolipids and lectins, which specifically recognize particular glycan epitopes. As the glycocalyx is the cell's primary interface with the external environment many biologically significant events can be attributed to glycan recognition. For this reason the rapidly expanding glycomics field is being increasingly recognized as an important component in our quest to better understand the functioning of the immune system. In this review, we highlight the current status of immune cell glycomics, with particular attention being paid to T- and B-lymphocytes and dendritic cells. We also describe the strategies and methodologies used to define immune cell glycomes.