A lot of experimental data has been produced which suggests that there is a crucial role for glycans during the different stages of melanoma progression. Malignant transformation is associated with various alterations in the glycosylation pattern of the protein glycans. The most common changes are associated with the presence of more branched and hypersialylated N-linked oligosaccharides, re-expression of fetal-type antigens and premature terminated glycans. Some of these changes may provide the tumor cells with an advantage in influencing their social behavior and facilitating metastasis formation so, glycan-target therapy in combination with existing protocols may have an important impact in the treatment of melanoma.
Keywords: Glycan markers, glycosyltransferases, melanoma, transformation
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