Carbohydrate engineered cells for regenerative medicine

Jian Du, Kevin J. Yarema

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Carbohydrates are integral components of the stem cell niche on several levels; proteoglycans are a major constituent of the extracellular matrix (ECM) surrounding a cell, glycosoaminoglycans (GAGs) help link cells to the ECM and the neighboring cells, and small but informationally-rich oligosaccharides provide a "sugar code" that identifies each cell and provides it with unique functions. This article samples roles that glycans play in development and then describes how metabolic glycoengineering - a technique where monosaccharide analogs are introduced into the metabolic pathways of a cell and are biosynthetically incorporated into the glycocalyx - is overcoming many of the long-standing barriers to manipulating carbohydrates in living cells and tissues and is becoming an intriguing new tool for tissue engineering and regenerative medicine.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)671-682
Number of pages12
JournalAdvanced Drug Delivery Reviews
Issue number7-8
StatePublished - Jun 2010


  • Glucosamine
  • Glycan and oligosaccharide engineering
  • Hexosamine-based drugs
  • ManNAc analogs
  • Metabolic glycoengineering
  • Sialic acid
  • Tissue engineering

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmaceutical Science


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