The MIRAGE guidelines are being developed in response to a critical need in the glycobiology community to clarify glycoanalytic results so that they are more readily evaluated (in terms of their scope and depth) and to facilitate the reproduction of important results in the laboratory. The molecular and biological complexity of the glycosylation process makes thorough reporting of the results of a glycomics experiment a highly challenging endeavor. The resulting data specifies the identity and quantity of complex structures, whose precise molecular features are sometimes inferred using prior knowledge, such as familiarity with a particular biosynthetic mechanism. Specifying the exact methods and assumptions that were used to assign and quantify reported structures allows the interested scientist to appreciate the scope and depth of the analysis. Mass spectrometry is the most widely used tool for glycomics experiments. The interpretation and reproducibility of MS-based glycomics data depends on comprehensive metadata describing instrumentation, instrument setup and data acquisition protocols. The MIRAGE guidelines for MS-based glycomics have been designed to facilitate the collection and sharing of this critical information in order to assist the glycoanalyst in generating the data sets with maximum information content and biological relevance.
This article was published online in Molecular and Cellular Proteomics and is free to access.