Lectins as Tools to Select for Glycosylated Proteins

  • Els J. M. Van DammeEmail author
Part of the Methods in Molecular Biology book series (MIMB, volume 753)


Glycosylation has been recognized as one of the most important modifications on proteins. The interactions between proteins and glycans are known to play an important role in many biological processes. Lectins are carbohydrate-binding proteins that can specifically interact with and select for carbohydrate structures. The technique of lectin affinity chromatography takes advantage of this specific interaction and enables the selection and purification of glycoproteins with carbohydrate structures complementary to the lectin-binding site. Depending on the carbohydrate specificity of the lectin glycoprotein fractions enriched for example, high mannose or complex N-glycans or O-glycans can be obtained. Afterward both the protein part and the glycan part can be analyzed in more detail allowing the identification of the interacting partners and the type of glycans involved.

Key words

Affinity chromatography carbohydrate specificity glycan glycoprotein lectin 



The financial support of the Research Council of Ghent University and Fund for Scientific Research-Flanders (G.0022.08) is gratefully acknowledged.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Molecular BiotechnologyGhent UniversityGhentBelgium

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