Issue 5, 2019

In-depth structural analysis of glycans in the gas phase


Although there have been substantial improvements in glycan analysis over the past decade, the lack of both high-resolution and high-throughput methods hampers progress in glycomics. This perspective article highlights the current developments of liquid chromatography, mass spectrometry, ion-mobility spectrometry and cryogenic IR spectroscopy for glycan analysis and gives a critical insight to their individual strengths and limitations. Moreover, we discuss a novel concept in which ion mobility-mass spectrometry and cryogenic IR spectroscopy is combined in a single instrument such that datasets consisting of m/z, collision cross sections and IR fingerprints can be obtained. This multidimensional data will then be compared to a comprehensive reference library of intact glycans and their fragments to accurately identify unknown glycans on a high-throughput scale with minimal sample requirements. Due to the complementarity of the obtained information, this novel approach is highly diagnostic and also suitable for the identification of larger glycans; however, the workflow and instrumentation is straightforward enough to be implemented into a user-friendly setup.

Graphical abstract: In-depth structural analysis of glycans in the gas phase

Article information

Article type
05 Dec 2018
04 Jan 2019
First published
04 Jan 2019
This article is Open Access

All publication charges for this article have been paid for by the Royal Society of Chemistry
Creative Commons BY license

Chem. Sci., 2019,10, 1272-1284

In-depth structural analysis of glycans in the gas phase

E. Mucha, A. Stuckmann, M. Marianski, W. B. Struwe, G. Meijer and K. Pagel, Chem. Sci., 2019, 10, 1272 DOI: 10.1039/C8SC05426F

This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported Licence. You can use material from this article in other publications without requesting further permissions from the RSC, provided that the correct acknowledgement is given.

Read more about how to correctly acknowledge RSC content.

Social activity