Glycans in Aging and Disease


On 20thJune afternoon, Prof. Jin Won Cho and Prof. Fu-tong Liu chaired the session of "Glycans in Aging and Disease". Ten professors made wonderful presentations at the Triumphant Hall of the Seaview Garden Hotel. The overview of this session is as follows:

Naoyuki Taniguchi

The first speaker is the initiator of the conference, Professor Naoyuki Taniguchi (Osaka International Cancer Institute, Japan). His group found the important role ofthe branching N-glycans in the aspects of biomarker discovery and therapeutic approach. They indicated that glycosyltransferases involved in N-glycan branching and their enzymatic products play various important roles in disease onset, diagnosis and treatment.

Celso Albuquerque Reis

Professor Celso Albuquerque Reis (University of Porto, Portugal) introduced the functional and therapeutic implications of the cellular receptor glycosylation in cancer. Their results disclosed novel functional aspects of glycosylation modifications occurring in key proteins in gastric cancer. They also found these glycosylation modifications can play a role as cancer biomarkers for patient stratification and therapeutic intervention.

Wen Yi

The third speaker is Professor Wen Yi (Zhejiang University, China). He and his co-workers found O-GlcNAcylation regulates protein synthesis by modifying core components of the translation initiation complex. Their study reveals a new molecular mechanism of protein translation regulation and may offer new therapeutic opportunities for treating cancer.

Yuchao Gu

In Professor Yuchao Gu(Ocean University of China, China)’s talkthey indicated the protective roles of SIRT1 O-GlcNAcylation under stress. Their findings demonstrated that O-GlcNAcylation is a molecular switch of SIRT1 under stress conditions. At the same time, the results suggested a novel potential therapeutic target for preventing age-related diseases and extending healthspan.

Huilin Hao

Huilin Hao (University of Georgia, USA)’s talk was themed around the inhibition of Notch signalling using fucose analogs. They demonstrated that two analogs, 6-alkynyl and 6-alkenyl fucose, were incorporated directly into Notch EGF repeats in cells. Both analogs were potent inhibitors of binding to and activation of Notch1 by Notch ligands Dll1 and Dll4, but not by Jag1. Mutagenesis and modeling studies suggest that incorporation of the analogs into EGF8 of Notch1 markedly reduces the ability of Delta ligands to bind and activate Notch1.

After coffee break, Prof. Tamao Endo and Prof. Celso Albuquerque Reis continued to chaired the section of “Glycans in Aging and Disease”.

Fu-Tong Liu

Next, Professor Fu-Tong Liu (Academia Sinica, Chinese Taiwan) made a presentation about the cytosolic galectins. They explored the concept that alterations in cell surface glycosylation by extracellular factors can be deciphered by galectins during the process of phagocytosis/endocytosis, followed by rupture of phagosomal/endosomal membrane. Their findings demonstrated that cytosolic galectins may sensechanges in glycosylation on the cell surface. They also illuminated the mechanism of the cellular responsemodulation.

Jianing Zhang

Professor Jianing Zhang (Dalian University of Technology, China) introduced the role of caveolin-1 in hepatocarcinogenesis and metastasis. They found that exogenous Cav-1 expression may activate multi-signaling pathways in hepatocarcinoma cells. These pathways may promote glycosyltransferases gene expression at transcriptional levels. Their research demonstrated Cav-1 expression enhances hepatocarcinogenesis and metastasis via modulating comprehensive glycosylation in vitro and in vivo.

Daan van Aalten  

Professor Daan van Aalten (University of Dundee, UK) gave a talk about O-GlcNAc transferase (OGT). He described the effects of OGT mutations in embryonic stem cells and Drosophila melanogaster. He also described their efforts towards uncovering themechanisms underpinning the neurodevelopmental phenotypes observed in Intellectual Disability (ID) patients.

Dapeng Zhou

In Professor Dapeng Zhou (Tongji University, China)’s talk, they showed a promising target for antibody-drug development, aberrant glycosylated MUC1. They conjugated a monoclonal antibody, 16A, with monomethyl auristatin E (MMAE). The 16A-MMAE ADC targeting aberrant glycosylated MUC1 showed high efficacy in xenograft model of lung cancer.


Professor Qiu Yan (Dalian Medical University, China) showed us roles of protein O-fucosyltransferase 1 (poFUT1) at maternal-fetal interface. The functions of poFUT1 in promoting embryonic cell development and uterine stroma cell decidualization were confirmed. Taken together, poFUT1 may be applied as a potential marker for successful pregnancy, and diagnostic and therapeutic targets for infertility.