The Oxford notation is based on building up N-glycan structures. Therefore it can be used to denote verycomplex glycans.
All N-glycans have two core GlcNAcs; F at the start of the abbreviation indicates a core fucose ; Mx, number(x) of mannose on core GlcNAcs; Ax, number of antenna (GlcNAc) on trimannosyl core; A2, biantennarywith both GlcNAcs as alpha1-2 linked; Gx, number (x) of linked galactose on antenna; G1 and G1indicates that the galactose is on the antenna of the alpha1-3 or alpha1-6 mannose; Sx, number (x) of sialicacids linked to galactose.
The Oxford notation can be used for bisecting GlcNAcs, tri- and tetra-antennary glycans, furthersubstitutions such as fucose, sulphation, phosophorylation, GalNAcs etc. Numbers are also used to indicatelinkages where known (e.g. F(6)A2G(4)2S(6)2 is a biantennary glycan with a core fucose in an alpha 6linkage, the two galactoses are beta 1-4 linked, and the sialic acids are alpha 2-6 linked).
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The above is taken from the following Ludger document.