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Pioneering stem cell glycomics

Glykos has worked with stem cell glycomics since 2004 resulting in 25 patent families. Glykos’ scientists were the first to characterize, patent and publish the glycomes of adult and embryonic human stem cells. The platform covers the entire stem cell glycome:

  • Characterization of hundreds of cell surface biomarkers
  • Improved methods for cell production (culture, isolation and modification methods)
  • Development of novel and improved stem cell products
  • Sensitive analysis of cell status (differentiation, contamination and tissue compatibility)
  • Multiple analytical methods (MS, NMR, FACS, ELISA, IHC, microarray, etc.)

Glycans are key surface determinants of stem cells and have a key role in their biology with functions in differentiation and cell communication. Understanding and controlling the surfaces enable development of safe and efficient stem cell technologies. Cell surface glycan patterns change during stem cell differentiation. Hence, glycans allow for very specific analysis of stem cell status and lineage unlike currently used characterization approaches. Glycans are species-specific and allow for the detection of xenocontamination within human stem cell populations. Glycans can be specifically and transiently modified to improve the properties of stem cell grafts. Since cell surface glycans undergo key interactions in processes such as stem cell homing and engrafting, stem cell modification technology is a key tool to manipulate stem cell surfaces in order to improve success of stem cell transplantation.