Changes of a cell’s glycosylation is one of the first sign of an altered environment for the cells. Hence, diseases such as cancer and inflammation manifest themselves by an altered glycosylation and suggest that glycoconjugates can be used as biomarkers for early stage diseases.  The carbohydrate rich glycocalyx of a cell is also the way cells are presenting themselves to the outside word and specific carbohydrates are the transmitters for cellular communication. We believe that all extracellular biological events would involve glycoconjugates, and we have developed workflows that allows characterization of a variety of mammalian type glycoconjugates.

Glycomic analysis of oligosaccharides and glycolipids in BioMS

HPLC and MS is currently the state-of-the-art providers of glycomic data N-linked, O-linked and glycosphingolipids). Our instrumentation has been shown to successfully address glycobiological questions in clinical, transgenic and small-scale cell culture.

The LC-MS methodology for analyses of O-linked and N-linked released oligosaccharides by negative ion graphitized carbon LC-MS has been validated in the HUPO glycomic committee. The same approach has also been adopted for glycosphingolipds. LC on graphitized carbon column giving excellent separation of structural isomers providing informative MS/MS of individual isomers. If the ceramide composition is of interest isolated native glycosphingolipids are analyzed by LC-MS using HILIC columns. We are continuously updating the freely available MS/MS spectral library UniCarb-DB ( to aid in assignment. The database is hosted by BioMS.

The HPLC methodology for N-linked glycans are well-established in both academic and pharma-industry and together with exoglycosidase digestion and MS, this provide detailed characterization of glycans in a high throughput platform. We are using the validated database GlycoBase  ( to aid in assignment of structures.

Support that BioMS provide

  • Screening of released N-linked and O-linked oligosaccharides and liberated glycans from glycolipids for comparative glycomics.
  • Detailed characterization of N-linked and O-linked oligosaccharides and liberated glycans from glycolipids using exoglycosidases and HPLC and/or LC-MSn


  Niclas Karlsson