Carbohydrates in living cells and organisms are involved in various physiological and pathogenic processes through specific interactions with proteins. As a result, studies of carbohydrate-protein interactions not only provide valuable information for the understanding of biological phenomena but they also have the potential of leading to the development of novel carbohydrate-based pharmaceutical agents. The significance of these biomolecular interactions has stimulated exploitation for new technologies to rapidly analyze carbohydrate-mediated biological processes. In recent years, much effort has been made to develop carbohydrate microarrays which can be used for this purpose. The advancements made in this area have extended the scope of biological and biomedical research on carbohydrate-mediated molecular interactions. In this review, we describe progress that has been made in fabrication of carbohydrate microarrays, as well as in various applications of this technique to functional glycomics. In addition, recent progress of lectin microarrays for uses in glycoprofiling of glycoproteins, cells and pathogens is also described.
Keywords: Carbohydrates, carbohydrate microarrays, glycan-protein interactions, glycomics, high-throughput analysis, lectins
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