Omics-based Identification of Glycan Structures as Biomarkers for a Variety of Diseases.Mol Inform 2019MI
Glycans play important roles in cell communication, protein interaction, and immunity, and structural changes in glycans are associated with the regulation of a range of biological pathways involved in disease. However, our understanding of the detailed relationships between specific diseases and glycans is very limited. In this study, we proposed an omics-based method to investigate the correlations between glycans and a wide range of human diseases. We analyzed the gene expression patterns of glycogenes (glycosyltransferases and glycosidases) for 79 different diseases. A biological pathway-based glycogene signature was constructed to identify the alteration in glycan biosynthesis and the associated glycan structures for each disease state. The degradation of N-glycan and keratan sulfate, for example, may promote the growth or metastasis of multiple types of cancer, including endometrial, gastric, and nasopharyngeal. Our results also revealed that commonalities between diseases can be interpreted using glycogene expression patterns, as well as the associated glycan structure patterns at the level of the affected pathway. The proposed method is expected to be useful for understanding the relationships between glycans, glycogenes, and disease and identifying disease-specific glycan biomarkers.