European Biophysics Journal

, Volume 40, Issue 2, pp 209–215 | Cite as

Quantification of the effect of glycocalyx condition on membrane receptor interactions using an acoustic wave sensor

  • Michael Saitakis
  • Electra Gizeli
Biophysics Letter


The effect of the cell glycocalyx on the binding of a membrane receptor, class I major histocompatibility complex (MHC) human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-A2, to an immobilized anti-HLA antibody was investigated using an acoustic sensor based on a Love wave geometry. The enzyme neuraminidase was used to remove sialic acid residues from the cell glycocalyx. Real-time measurements of the amplitude of the acoustic wave showed that treatment with neuraminidase facilitates HLA/anti-HLA-mediated cell attachment via a 3.6-fold increase of the two-dimensional (2D) binding constant of the interaction. This could be attributed to better approach of binding partners due to favorable condition of the desialylated glycocalyx. The results underline the importance of microtopological factors in membrane receptor binding and reveal the potential of the Love wave sensor and 2D binding parameters for studying cell–substrate binding events.


Glycocalyx HLA SAW sensor Two-dimensional kinetics Two-dimensional affinity 



The authors would like to acknowledge the financial support of ELKE, University of Crete (research grant K. A. 2732) and the General Secretariat of Research and Technology (PENED 03ED623).


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Copyright information

© European Biophysical Societies' Association 2010

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology, FO.R.T.HHeraklionGreece
  2. 2.Department of BiologyUniversity of CreteHeraklionGreece

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