A convergent synthetic strategy to Cryptococcus neoformans glucuronoxylomannan (GXM) capsular polysaccharide part structures was developed based on di-, tri-, tetra-, penta- and hexasaccharide thioglycoside building blocks. The approach permitted the synthesis of a library of spacer-containing serotype A and D related GXM oligosaccharide structures, ranging from di- to octadecasaccharides. Ten deprotected GXM compounds (mono- to decasaccharide) were printed onto microarray plates and screened with seventeen mouse monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) to GXM. For the first time a GXM oligosaccharide structure (a serotype A decasaccharide), capable of being recognized by neutralizing forms of these GXM-specific mAbs, has been identified, offering insight into the binding epitopes of a range of protective monoclonal antibodies and furthering our efforts to develop semi-synthetic conjugate vaccine candidates against C. neoformans.
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