GlycoMIP User Facility installs first two Glyconeers® in U.S.

Maren Roman, Robert J. Woods

Meet Gottfried and Ingeborg, the newest instrumental members of the GlycoMIP user facility. Gottfried and Ingeborg are fully automated oligosaccharide synthesizers (Glyconeers®) from GlycoUniverse. These instruments are numbers 11 and 12 in the world and are the first of their kind in the United States. An ongoing challenge for the field of glycoscience and glycomaterials is the limited access to structurally-defined glycans, as well as the tremendous synthetic effort and cost associated with designer glycan synthesis. Just as the DNA/RNA and peptide automated synthesizers have revolutionized research in their respective fields, the Glyconeers@ are anticipated to significantly accelerate and reduce costs of complex glycan production, while also providing access to previously unattainable glycan structures. These instruments deliver glycan building blocks to a temperature- controlled reaction vessel, where they can attach to a solid-support resin via a photo-cleavable handle. Selective deprotection of the building block allows for iterative glycosylation reactions with defined linkages until the desired glycan structure is generated. The Glyconeers® are complemented by a suite of preparative and analytical instruments housed in the MP's synthesis facility that release resin-bound glycans, deprotect, purify, and characterize them.