Multiplex glycan bead array for high throughput and high content analyses of glycan binding proteins

Nat Commun. 2018 Jan 17;9(1):258. doi: 10.1038/s41467-017-02747-y.


Glycan-binding proteins (GBPs) play critical roles in diverse cellular functions such as cell adhesion, signal transduction and immune response. Studies of the interaction between GBPs and glycans have been hampered by the availability of high throughput and high-content technologies. Here we report multiplex glycan bead array (MGBA) that allows simultaneous analyses of 384 samples and up to 500 glycans in a single assay. The specificity, sensitivity and reproducibility of MGBA are evaluated using 39 plant lectins, 13 recombinant anti-glycan antibodies, and mammalian GBPs. We demonstrate the utility of this platform by the analyses of natural anti-glycan IgM and IgG antibodies in 961 human serum samples and the discovery of anti-glycan antibody biomarkers for ovarian cancer. Our data indicate that the MGBA platform is particularly suited for large population-based studies that require the analyses of large numbers of samples and glycans.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Validation Study

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / analysis*
  • Biomarkers, Tumor / chemistry
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Plant Lectins / chemistry
  • Plant Lectins / metabolism
  • Plants / metabolism
  • Polysaccharides / chemistry*
  • Polysaccharides / immunology
  • Polysaccharides / metabolism
  • Protein Array Analysis / methods*
  • Small Molecule Libraries


  • Antibodies
  • Biomarkers, Tumor
  • Plant Lectins
  • Polysaccharides
  • Small Molecule Libraries