Plants are gaining increasingly acceptance as a production platform for recombinant proteins. One reason for this is their ability
to carry out posttranslational protein modifications in a similar if not identical way as mammalian cells. The capability of plants to
carry out human-like complex glycosylation is well known. Moreover, the targeted manipulation of the plant N-glycosylation pathway allows
the production of proteins carrying largely homogeneous, human-type oligosaccharides. These outstanding results have placed
plants in a favourable position compared to other eukaryotic expression systems. This review provides a comprehensive summary of the
N-glycosylation of plant-produced recombinant proteins, the possible impact of plant-specific N-glycans on the human immune system,
and recent advances in engineering the plant N-glycosylation pathway towards the synthesis of (complex) human-type glycan structures,
highlighting challenges and achievements in the application of these powerful technologies.
Keywords: Plants, recombinant proteins, glycosylation, glyco-engineering.
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