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Nucleic Acids Research
Vol: 35, No: xx, 2007; Pages: D280–D286

Sharing of worldwide distributed carbohydrate-related
digital resources: online connection of the Bacterial
Carbohydrate Structure DataBase

Philip Toukach, Hiren J Joshi1, Rene´ Ranzinger1, Yuri Knirel and Claus-W. von der Lieth1,*

N. D. Zelinsky Institute of Organic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, 119991 Moscow, Russia and 1German Cancer Research Center, Spectroscopic Department (B090), Molecular Modeling, Im Neuenheimer Feld 280, D-69120 Heidelberg, Germany.


Functional glycomics, the scientific attempt to identify and assign functions to all glycan molecules
synthesized by an organism, is an emerging field of science. In recent years, several databases have been started, all aiming to support deciphering the biological function of carbohydrates. However, diverse encoding and storage schemes are in use amongst these databases, significantly hampering the interchange of data. The mutual online access between the Bacterial Carbohydrate Structure DataBase (BCSDB) and the GLYCOSCIENCES.de portal, as a first reported attempt of a structurebased direct interconnection of two glyco-related databases is described. In this approach, users have to learn only one interface, will always have access to the latest data of both services, and will have the results of both searches presented in a consistent way. The establishment of this connection helped to find shortcomings and inconsistencies in the database design and functionality related to underlying data concepts and structural representations. For the maintenance of the databases, duplication of work can be easily avoided, and will hopefully lead to a better worldwide acceptance of both services within the community of glycoscienists.

Keywords:Functional glycomics;carbohydrates;Bacterial Carbohydrate Structure
DataBase;GLYCOSCIENCES.de portal;GlycoSuiteDB;glycan molecules;taxonomy.

Corresponding author: Tel +49 6221 424541; Fax +49 6221 42454.

E-mail: w.vonderlieth@dkfz.de


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