Kiel Plant Glycan Group

Research field of  Prof. Dr. Birgit Classen

Arabinogalactan-Proteins (AGPs):

Signaling molecules of the plant cell wall


AGPs are glycoproteins of the plant cell wall, sometimes bound to the plasma membrane via a  GPI-anchor. They consist of a small protein (around 10%) und a big polysaccharide moiety (around 90%). Characteristic monosaccharides are galactose und arabinose as well as others (e.g. glucuronic acid, rhamnose) in minor amounts. Typical for the protein part are appreciable amounts of the amino acid hydroxyproline. Also in our group it could be shown, that this amino acid is responsible for  O-glycosidic linkage of the protein core with several arabinogalactan moieties. Interestingly AGPs from the medicinal plant Echinacea purpurea show an arrangement of Hyp in blocks; a feature normally typically for other glycoproteins of the cell wall (extensins). For details of our research fields see the following pages (and our publications).        

1. Isolation of AGPs

2. Structure elucidation of AGPs and other polysaccharides

3. Evolution of the plant cell wall

DFG project on seagrasses, job offer

DFG priority programme MAdLand

4. Functions of arabinogalactan-proteins in the plant

5. Biological activities of AGPs


DFG project on seagrasses: "Cell walls of seagrasses from the Baltic, the Mediterranean, the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean - a new source of galactans for interaction with human galectins"


Postdoc: Lukas Pfeifer
PhD: Kim-Kristine Müller, Jon Utermöhlen
Master: Felicitas Erdt