Glycan-mediated interactions are essential in many biological processes and regulate a wide variety of cellular functions. However, characterizing these interactions is difficult because glycan biosynthesis is not template driven and because carbohydrate recognition events are usually of low affinity and transient. Photocrosslinking carbohydrate probes can form a covalent bond with molecules in close proximity on UV irradiation and are capable of capturing interactions between glycans and glycan-binding proteins in situ. Because of these advantages, multiple photocrosslinking carbohydrate probes have been designed and applied to study the biological functions of glycans. This review will discuss recent advances in the development of novel photocrosslinking functional groups and the design of photocrosslinking probes to detect interactions mediated by glycolipids, peptidoglycan, and multivalent carbohydrate ligands. These probes have demonstrated the potential to address some of the major challenges in the study of glycan-mediated interactions in both model systems and in more complex biological settings.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry