Glycoconjugates: Overview and strategy


Roger A. Laine

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This chapter focuses on glycoconjugates. The practical application of mass spectrometric techniques to the difficult task of complete structural elucidation of oligosaccharides, polysaccharides, and glycoconjugates has been influenced strongly by instrument development—namely, gas-liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry, soft ionization, and high-field magnets. First, methylation linkage analysis developed principally because of the first working interface between a gas-liquid chromatograph and a mass spectrometer (GC/MS) which was assembled by Ragnar Ryhage at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm on what would become the LKB-9000 instrument. The two-stage molecular separator, which constituted this interface, was ingenious and enabled online mass spectrometric analysis of gas-liquid chromatography effluents. The synergy of an on-line chromatographic and mass spectrometric system was astounding and still constitutes one of the most powerful analytical tools for volatiles. The chapter provides a valuable text for those who intend to acquire a background in mass spectrometry related to carbohydrate chemistry and provides a surprisingly rich lesson for those who believe that carbohydrate mass spectrometry began with fast atom bombardment ionization (FAB)-MS methods. © 1990, Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Methods in Enzymology

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