Fourth Edition of Landmark Glycobiology textbook now available in print and online

image of a model of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein
Molecular representation of the full-length, fully glycosylated, all-atom model of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in the open state, embedded in the viral membrane.

Cold Spring Harbor, NY — Glycans (saccharides or carbohydrates) are widely distributed in all living life-forms, and Glycobiology is the study of their structure, biosynthesis, biology, and evolution. It is a rapidly growing field, relevant to many areas of basic research, biomedicine, and biotechnology and materials science.

The newly published fourth edition of Essentials of Glycobiology has been thoroughly revised, especially with respect to the bioactivity, evolution, informatics, and nanotechnology of glycans, and genetic disorders of glycosylation. The book has an expanded international editorial board and a diverse panel of contributing authors, representing a wide range of expertise in emerging areas. Other key enhancements include a broadened focus on all lineages of life-forms in nature, increased coverage of topics, and in-depth attention to informatics and the exploration of the glycome and the glycoproteome.  Most of the figures, many featuring artwork by one of the Editors, Richard Cummings of Harvard University, are also downloadable for nonprofit and teaching purposes.

Praise from leaders in the field on previous editions of this authoritative textbook affirm that it’s a critical resource for all researchers: “…Essentials of Glycobiology may be life changing for scientists who have not yet engaged with glycobiology, and will certainly be a treasured resource for those who already have,” said Bruce Beutler, Nobel Laureate in Medicine, 2011.

Essentials of Glycobiology now provides succinct coverage of this important area of science for non-experts, like me, as well as the cognoscenti. The basic principles of glycobiology are clearly articulated … and the roles of complex carbohydrates in disease are an important read for all biomedical scientists,” said Peter Agre, Nobel Laureate in Chemistry, 2003.

Like prior editions of Essentials of Glycobiology, the fourth edition is freely available on the National Center for Biotechnology Information’s (NCBI’s) online bookshelf, hosted by the U.S. National Library of Medicine. The free online book is released simultaneously with a print and exclusive eBook edition published by Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press (CSHLP). Copies can be ordered at the CSHLP website, Amazon, and other book retailers.

The book’s innovative content and publishing models are the result of an ongoing collaboration between CSHLP, the book’s Consortium of Glycobiology Editors led by Dr. Ajit Varki, University of California at San Diego, CSHLP, and NCBI. The Glycobiology Research and Training Center at UC San Diego and the Programs of Excellence in Glycoscience of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI) also contributed resources toward the project. The editors of the new edition will be assigning all proceeds from sales of the print book to further the impact of this resource in the glycoscience community.

Please visit CSHLP for more information and details on how to order the print book:

Please visit the NCBI Bookshelf for access to the free online edition:

image of the Essentials of Glycobiology book cover






IMAGE: Molecular representation of the full-length, fully glycosylated, all-atom model of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in the open state, embedded in the viral membrane. The model was developed by Casalino et al. (ACS Cent Sci 6: 1722–1734 [2020]) based on the cryo-EM structure by Wrapp et al. (Science 367: 1260–1263 [2020]) (PDB ID: 6VSB). N-/O-glycans are modeled according to Watanabe et al. (Science 369: 330–333 [2020]) and Shajahan et al. (Glycobiology 30: 981– 988 [2020]).

CREDIT: Dr. Lorenzo Casalino in the Amaro Laboratory (University of California San Diego)

About Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press is an internationally renowned not-for-profit publisher of books, journals, and electronic media, located on Long Island, New York. Since 1933, it has furthered the advance and spread of scientific knowledge in all areas of genetics and molecular biology, including cancer biology, plant science, bioinformatics, and neurobiology. It is a division of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, an innovator in life science research and the education of scientists, students, and the public. All revenue from sales of CSHL Press publications supports research at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory.

Media/Press Contact:

Robert Redmond, Marketing Manager, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press