Split-and-Combine Approach Towards Branched Precision Glycomacromolecules and Their Lectin Binding Behavior

Chemistry. 2018 Feb 1;24(7):1619-1630. doi: 10.1002/chem.201704179. Epub 2018 Jan 4.


Previously, monodisperse and sequence-controlled oligo(amidoamine) scaffolds were synthesized based on the step-wise assembly of tailor-made building blocks on a solid support that allow for the multivalent presentation of sugar ligands. Here, we extend on this concept using a split-and-combine approach to gain access to a small library of linear and branched glycomacromolecules. Azide side chains were introduced in the scaffold by the use of a novel building block allowing for copper-mediated azide-alkyne cycloaddition (CuAAC) of readily available propargyl-functionalized glycans. In the first stage, after assembly of the linear scaffold on solid support, the batch was divided into two. One part of the resin-bound oligomers was end-capped and further used as backbone and the other part was functionalized with propargylated α-d-mannopyranoside in the sidechain, end capped with an alkyne functionality and finally cleaved from solid support to give the branching arm. In the second stage, the linear, glycosylated and alkynylated arms were then coupled to the end capped backbone via CuAAC. In this way, branched glycomacromolecules with two and three branches, respectively, have been synthesized carrying from two to six sugar residues per molecule. Both, linear arms and branched glycomacromolecules were then subjected to a lectin binding assay using surface plasmon resonance (SPR) and model lectin Concanavalin A (Con A) showing the effect of branching as well as valency on the binding kinetics.

Keywords: biomimetic synthesis; glycoconjugates; multivalency; precision glycomacromolecules; solid-phase synthesis.

MeSH terms

  • Alkynes / chemistry
  • Azides / chemistry
  • Concanavalin A / chemical synthesis
  • Copper / chemistry
  • Cycloaddition Reaction
  • Kinetics
  • Lectins / chemistry*
  • Ligands
  • Mannose / analogs & derivatives*
  • Mannose / chemical synthesis*
  • Polysaccharides / chemistry*
  • Small Molecule Libraries / chemical synthesis*
  • Stereoisomerism
  • Thermodynamics


  • Alkynes
  • Azides
  • Lectins
  • Ligands
  • Polysaccharides
  • Small Molecule Libraries
  • Concanavalin A
  • Copper
  • Mannose