Research Director: Yukishige Ito
Chief Scientist, RIKEN Advanced Science Institute
Research Term 2009-2014
A majority of proteins of higher animals and other eukaryotes such as plants and yeasts are decorated by a variety of glycan chains. These glycoprotein glycans have been revealed to play pivotal roles in a numerous biological events, such as intercellular recognition, cell differentiation, cancer development, signal transduction, immune responses and microbial infection. More recently, their functions in protein three-dimensional structural formation process have been clarified and attracted growing attention in glycobilogy.
The aim of this project is to provide clear understanding of these processes by using chemically synthesized glycan chains and glycoproteins. We expect it will be the model case which shows the advantage of the approach based on organic chemistry in life science. In addition, new trends of researches aiming at solution of various diseases derived from abnormal three-dimensional structure of proteins and glycan structure deficiency, development of synthetic glycoprotein drugs and novel antimicrobial agents will be created.