welcome to attend the 5th International Symposium on Glycosyltransferases
that will be held at Tsukuba International Congress Center on June
Nearly twenty years have passed since the first
glycosyltransferase was found and so far, most human glycosyltransferases
had been found and cloned. The biological functions of carbohydrate
chains have been researched, using the enzymes as a basic tool.
I hope that our research on carbohydrate chains will develop more
through this symposium.
In recent years, studies on carbohydrate chains have been
recognized as an important field in postgenomic research. Many proteins
and lipids in the body are functionally matured by the addition of carbohydrate
chains. However, their importance had been overlooked by the absence of
appropriate analytical technology to handle them.
Glycosyltransferase is an enzyme which synthesizes carbohydrate chains.
Presumably, there are approximately 250 types of glycosyltransferases
in human body. To the present, nearly 200 types of glycosyltransferases
had been found and cloned. Using such glycosyltransferases, technologies
required for the synthesis and structural analysis of carbohydrate chains
are progressively developing. The biological function of carbohydrate
chains has been found through the application of the analytical technology
to bio-materials. In terms of regenerative medicine and medical treatment
for cancer, diabetes, infectious disease, neuromuscular disease and renal
disease, the functional analysis of carbohydrate chains is thought to
Since most glycosyltransferases had been found, the latest findings in
the function of novel carbohydrate chains will be reported in the symposium,
and hopefully the foundation of ?glycoscience will be further expanded,
contributing to human health and welfare. It is also expected that there
will be an opportunity for researchers to exchange their recent advances
in the field.