Sequence-Controlled Glycopolymers via Step-Growth Polymerization of Precision Glycomacromolecules for Lectin Receptor Clustering

Biomacromolecules. 2017 Mar 13;18(3):787-796. doi: 10.1021/acs.biomac.6b01657. Epub 2017 Feb 8.


A versatile approach for the synthesis of sequence-controlled multiblock copolymers, using a combination of solid phase synthesis and step-growth polymerization by photoinduced thiol-ene coupling (TEC) is presented. Following this strategy, a series of sequence-controlled glycopolymers is derived from the polymerization of a hydrophilic spacer macromonomer and different glycomacromonomers bearing between one to five α-d-Mannose (Man) ligands. Through the solid phase assembly of the macromonomers, the number and positioning of spacer and sugar moieties is controlled and translates into the sequence-control of the final polymer. A maximum M̅n of 16 kDa, corresponding to a X̅n of 10, for the applied macromonomers is accessible with optimized polymerization conditions. The binding behavior of the resulting multiblock glycopolymers toward the model lectin Concanavalin A (ConA) is studied via turbidity assays and surface plasmon resonance (SPR) measurements, comparing the ability of precision glycomacromolecules and glycopolymers to bind to and cross-link ConA in dependence of the number of sugar moieties and overall molecular weight. The results show that there is a clear correlation between number of Man ligands and Con A binding and clustering, whereas the length of the glycooligomer- or polymer backbone seems to have no effect.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Cluster Analysis
  • Concanavalin A / chemistry
  • Lectins / chemistry*
  • Ligands
  • Mannose / chemistry*
  • Molecular Weight
  • Polymerization
  • Polymers / chemistry*
  • Surface Plasmon Resonance


  • Lectins
  • Ligands
  • Polymers
  • Concanavalin A
  • Mannose