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Free NIH Webinar: New Tools for Finding Glycans in the PDB & Using the Information to Model 3D Structures of Glycans and GlycoProteins

July 30, 2020

Upcoming Free Webinar 

New Tools for Finding Glycans in the PDB & Using the Information to Model 3D Structures of Glycans and GlycoProteins

August 14, 2020
1:30 - 3:30 p.m.

Register here

This Webinar is open to the public & free of charge.

Session I.
1:30 p.m., EDT
David Montgomery: Finally, a New Approach to Annotating and Finding Carbohydrates in the PDB
Topics Covered:
  • a simple uniform representation for oligosaccharides in the PDB - translating chaos to order
  • when does a carbohydrate stop being a carbohydrate?
  • what to do with errors and uncertainties?
  • GlyFinder, an awesome new way to search the PDB for all structures glyco
  • live demo with audience participation
  • beyond point-and-click: tools for glyco informaticians

Session II. 
2:15 p.m., EDT
Dr. Lachele Foley: Easy Tools for Modeling 3D Carbohydrate Structures
Topics Covered:
  • live demo with audience participation
  • do the models match the PDB structures?  Should they?
  • Dr. Al French: case study demonstrating the GlyFinder tool and comparing to quantum mechanical data

Session III.
2:45 p.m., EDT
Dr. Oliver GrantHow to generate scientifically meaningful (and beautiful) models of glycoproteins

Topics Covered:
  • a structural biologists conundrum - how to integrate glycomics data into 3D structures?
  • case study SARS CoV-2 Spike glycoprotein
  • science meets art (VMD images)
  • removing the tedium: really cool automated tools - coming soon!
Glycans play a critical role in nearly all aspects of biology, ranging from how our bodies recognize and fight viruses and bacteria to how proteins are moved throughout our cells to perform different tasks. The Common Fund’s Glycoscience program (CF-GSP) is creating new resources, tools, and methods to make the study of glycans (sugars) more accessible to the broader research community. The Protein Data Bank (PDB) contains more than 160,000 3D structures of biological macromolecules 20% of which contain carbohydrates as ligands or as chemical modifications.  Unfortunately, much of the PDB's carbohydrate structural data contains errors and/or inconsistencies in annotation.  As part of a broad carbohydrate remediation initiative at the wwPDB, Dr. Robert Woods (with support from the CF-GSP) has developed a software tool “GlyFinder" to both address errors in deposited coordinates, and to search for carbohydrate structures in the PDB.  "Glyfinder" checks the internal consistency of the 3D structures of carbohydrates, converts the ad hoc nomenclature to a residue-based standard, parses the deposited coordinates of glycans into monosaccharide-based oligosaccharide chains, and provides a simple linear representation for the oligosaccharide sequence.  In addition, the “GlyFinder” search interface implemented at GLYCAM-Web ( greatly simplifies searching for and retrieving carbohydrate containing structures in the PDB.