Table of Contents
Molecules, Volume 21, Issue 5 (May 2016)
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Cover Story (view full-size image) Carbohydrates form the third alphabet of life, and their oligomers (glycans) are integral [...] Read more. Carbohydrates form the third alphabet of life, and their oligomers (glycans) are integral components of cellular glycoconjugates. By acting as counterreceptors for tissue lectins, they are increasingly delineated to affect diverse aspects of cell physiology. In addition to the glycans’ structure, the topology of their presentation is a factor for affinity to lectins. The importance of this is currently not properly understood but can be unraveled by designing chemical tools to help characterize structure–activity relationships, spanning the range from monovalent derivatives to glycoclusters and glycodendrimers, as well as biomimetic surfaces. Taking adhesion/growth-regulatory galectins as an instructive example, the concept and experimental proofs are presented on this functional pairing. View the paper