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Sialic Acid and Cancer

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Glycoscience: Biology and Medicine


Sialic acids are nine-carbon acidic monosaccharides found in terminal position of glycan chains. The sialylation of cell surface glycoconjugates is frequently altered in cancers, resulting in the expression of sialylated tumor-associated carbohydrate antigens that are specific markers for this disease. Because sialylated glycans are involved in many biological processes, their expression by tumor cells is often associated with increased aggressiveness and metastatic potential of the tumors. The sialylated tumor-associated carbohydrate antigens are usually weakly expressed by healthy tissues and can be therefore used as immunotherapeutic targets for anticancer vaccines. This chapter summarizes the main tumor-associated sialylated structures and their role in cancer cells biology as well as their use for the development of anticancer vaccines.

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Correspondence to Sylvain Julien .

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Julien, S., Delannoy, P. (2015). Sialic Acid and Cancer. In: Taniguchi, N., Endo, T., Hart, G., Seeberger, P., Wong, CH. (eds) Glycoscience: Biology and Medicine. Springer, Tokyo.

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