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The constant outbreak of diseases caused by viral infections has caused serious harm to human health all over the world. Although many antiviral drugs have been approved for clinical use during the past decade, drug resistance and associated issues remain unresolved. Glycans have in very recent decades made outstanding contributions to the development of novel therapeutics. Marine glycans have many advantages as antiviral drug candidates, such as relatively low production costs, low cytotoxicity, and wide availability. Thus, marine glycans are attractive candidates for developing potential antiviral agents and have attracted great academic and industrial interest.

With experienced scientists in glycoscience, Creative Biolabs has successfully developed first-in-class technologies for the identification of glycans with antiviral activity. We are confident that our technology will facilitate our customers’ research and project development.

Potential Antiviral Agents: Marine Glycans

There remains today a critical need for new antiviral agents, particularly because of the alarming increase in important issues, such as unsatisfactory efficacy, toxicity, and high cost of drugs. Hence, the development of better antiviral agents that can address these antiviral drug issues is of high importance. The marine environment has been a prolific contributor to the identification of novel therapeutic agents in the recent few decades. Besides, glycans are major components of the surfaces of both host cells and most viruses that play critical roles in the steps of viral infection. It is well established that most interactions of microbial pathogens with their hosts are influenced by the pattern of their glycans and glycan-binding receptors. Marine glycans have more structural diversities than those found in humans. Most importantly, marine glycans have demonstrated potent antiviral activities through multiple molecular mechanisms. As a result, a series of marine glycan-derived agents are undergoing preclinical and clinical trials, such as carrageenan-based antiviral candidates, alginate-based anti-human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) candidates and dextran-based anti-HIV candidates.

The roles of sialic acid-modified glycans in influenza A virus infection.Fig.1 The roles of sialic acid-modified glycans in influenza A virus infection. (Hao, 2019)

Antiviral Activity of Marine Glycans in a Variety of Viruses

Glycans isolated from marine organisms (such as bacteria, chromists plants, and animals) to date are reported as alginates, chitosan, extracellular polysaccharides, fucans, galactans, glycolipids, glycosaminoglycans, glycosides, glycosylated haemocyanin, laminarans, mannans, polysaccharides, rhamnans, and xylomannans. Interestingly, many of the glycans displaying antiviral properties are sulfated. Reports have indicated that marine-sourced glycans have exhibited antiviral activity against African swine fever virus, cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus (EBV), dengue virus (DENV), encephalomyocarditis virus, HIV, hepatitis C virus (HCV), herpes simplex virus (HSV), human cytomegalovirus, human papillomavirus (HPV), human rhino virus (HRV), influenza virus, Japanese encephalitis virus, murine leukaemia virus, murine sarcoma virus, Newcastle disease virus, parainfluenza virus, respiratory syncytial virus, Semliki Forest virus, tobacco mosaic virus, vaccinia virus, varicella zoster virus, viral haemorrhagic septicaemia virus, and vesicular stomatitis virus.

Identification of Glycans with Antiviral Activity at Creative Biolabs

Our professional technical scientists and abundant experience make us a perfect partner to help our clients in the research and development of glycans with antiviral activity. Our experienced scientists are glad to apply this special expertise to help our worldwide customers with their cutting-edge research projects.


  • A range of tailored strategies for the identification and validation of glycans with antiviral activity
  • Top-rated customer experience
  • Reliability and information security
  • Deadline driven account management

The unique environment of the marine world is home to approximately half of the total global species, which provides extraordinary biodiversity and related chemical diversity. Creative Biolabs is dedicated to offering high-quality service in the identification of marine glycans with antiviral activity by providing custom services to meet our clients’ R&D timeline and budget. Please contact us for more information and a detailed quote.


  1. Hao, C.; et al. Marine glycan-based antiviral agents in clinical or preclinical trials. Reviews in medical virology. 2019, 29(3): e2043.
For Research Use Only.

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