Friday, August 19, 2016

History of glycoproteins

Glycoprotein is a protein modified by the addition of relatively short sugar chains. It is a macromolecules composed of a protein and carbohydrates.

The biochemical era of the history of glycoproteins covers more than a century from 1865 when Eichwald proved the first evidence that various mucins ‘’are compounds consisting of a moiety with all properties of a genuine protein and a moiety released under certain conditions as a sugar’, until 1968, the date of the triumphal entry of glycoproteins into the field of molecular biology when Ashwell discovered endogenous lectins and demonstrated that glycans are recognition signals.

The most important initial papers in the glycoprotein field were by O. Hammarsten in 1885. This work was carried out in the laboratories of the University of Uppsala and it is of interest that the later work of Gunnar Blix and his associate was carried out in the same laboratory.

Mannose was first identified in plasma glycoproteins by Dische in 1928 and at almost the same time by Rimington in 1929. Soon afterward, galactose was first shown to be present in plasma proteins by H. Bierry in 1934.

After 1945, the chemistry of glycoproteins began an exponential development phase due to the tenacity and faith of a new scientist who firmly convinced that insight into the metabolism, biology and pathology of glycoproteins can only be achieved on the basis of knowledge of the primary structure of the glycans.
History of glycoproteins

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