Shortened representation of oligosaccharide chains

From the JCBN/NC-IUB Newsletter 1986 [1]

Present recommendations [2] specify two methods of representing oligosaccharide chains, an extended form and a condensed form. We now realize that the condensed form is unnecessarily long, and suggest that there should be no serious loss in shortening it further by (i) omitting locants of anomeric carbon atoms; (ii) omitting the parentheses around the specifications of linkage; (iii) omitting hyphens if desired.

The shortening may be illustrated by reference to a trisaccharide as follows:

extended form: β-D-Galp-(14)-β-D-GlcNAcp-(12)-D-Man

condensed form: Gal(β1-4)GlcNAc(β1-2)Man

short form: Galβ4GlcNAcβ2Man, or Galβ-4GlcNAcβ-2Man.

The symbols for monosaccharides are given in ref 2. The shortened representation is used in the new recommendations on glycoproteins.

1. IUPAC-IUB Joint Commission on Biochemical Nomenclature (JCBN), and Nomenclature Commission of IUB (NC-IUB),.Newsletter 1986, Arch. Biochem. Biophys., 1986, 244, 393-395; Biochem. Internat., 1986, 12, following p 180; Biochem. J., 1986, 233, I-III; Biol. Chem. Hoppe-Seyler, 1986, 367, 1-4; Biosci. Rep., 1986, 6, 121-125; Chem. Internat., 1986, 8(4), 30-31; Eur. J. Biochem., 1986, 154, 485-487.

2. IUPAC-IUB Joint Commission on Biochemical Nomenclature (JCBN). Abbreviated terminology of oligosaccharide chains. Recommendations 1980. Arch. Biochem. Biophys. 1983, 220, 325-329; Eur. J. Biochem. 1982, 26, 433-437; J. Biol. Chern. 1982, 257, 3347-3351; Pure Appl. Chem. 1982, 54, 1517-1522.

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