Validation and Development of N-glycan as Biomarker in Cancer Diagnosis

Document Type

Journal Article


Bentham Science Publishers


Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science


School of Medical Sciences/Systems and Intervention Research Centre for Health




This article was originally published as: Wang, W. (2013). Validation and Development of N-glycan as Biomarker in Cancer Diagnosis. Current Pharmacogenomics and Personalized Medicine: the international journal for expert reviews in pharmacogenomics, 11(1), 53-58. Original article available here


Glycosylation, linking the glycan chains to protein or lipid, is the most common and complex post-translational modifications of proteins. One of the important functions of glycoprotein is to maintain the ordered social life of each cell in multicellular organisms. Glycosylation is sensitive to the biochemical environment leading to the alteration of glycan chains under the physiological condition and specific diseases such as cancer. Cancer and other lethal diseases cannot be diagnosed at early stage due to classic biomarker's low sensitivity and specificity. Recently, the development of glycan profiling technologies has offered great promises for understanding the complex glycan structures and has increased interest in applying this technology for cancer studies. In this regard, to identify the glycans as the potential biomarkers of cancer has become an important direction for clinical cancer diagnosis. This paper summarizes the current research on validating and developing of the glycans as new cancer biomarkers and the nascent field of glycomics.