Accessibility statement

Dr Martin Fascione

Senior Lecturer in Chemistry

Tel: 01904 328822

Chemical glycobiology and glycomedicine

  • Exploration of carbohydrates in disease
  • Chemical medicine
  • Synthetic carbohydrate chemistry
  • Automated oligosaccharide synthesis
  • Bioconjugation of proteins
  • Unnatural amino acid mutagenesis

Carbohydrates (or sugars as they are often known) are integral in a number of important biological processes including tumour metastasis, bacterial recognition, and the immunological response.

The Fascione group studies carbohydrates at the interface between chemistry and biology- a field commonly termed ‘chemical glycobiology’. Our focus is on deciphering and in vivo perturbation of the roles that carbohydrates play in the aetiology of disease. An overarching goal is to develop chemical biology tools, which can be applied in innovative new 'chemical glycomedicine' approaches for the prevention and treatment of disease, and to translate novel chemistry into living systems, from where the complex roles of carbohydrates can be probed further at a dynamic cellular level.
To achieve this goal, we utilise our developing expertise in chemical glycobiology and protein bioconjugation alongside a toolkit of techniques consisting of synthetic carbohydrate and peptide chemistry, organocatalysis, unnatural amino acid mutagenesis, enzymology, and molecular biology. This interdisciplinary approach has enabled us to explore glycsosylation and other post-translational modifications (PTMs) in pathologies such as Tuberculosis, Cholera (Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2014, 53, 8323-8327, highlighted as a VIP paper), Ebola viral infections (Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2016, 55, 4738-4742, highlighted as a VIP paper and back cover), E. coli infections (Angew. Chem. Int. Ed. 2017, 56, 12913-12918) and Leishmaniasis (Chem. Sci., 2018, 9, 5589-5593, highlighted as a hot article).

Selected publications


Martin Fascione received his Ph.D. from the University of Leeds in 2009, working under the supervision of W. Bruce Turnbull on the stereoselective synthesis of 1,2-cis-glycosides. Following a postdoctoral period in Leeds, Martin was awarded a Marie Curie International Outgoing Fellowship to study the mechanisms of carbohydrate processing enzymes with Prof. Steve Withers, FRS, at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada (2012-2013) and Prof. Gideon Davies, FRS, FMedSci, at the University of York, UK (2013-2014). In August 2014 he took up a lectureship in the York Structural Biology Laboratory, within the Department of Chemistry.