Difference Between Glycation and Glycosylation | Glycation vs Glycosylation

The key difference between glycation and glycosylation is that glycation is not an enzymatic process while glycosylation is an enzymatic process.

Both glycation and glycosylation are two processes that add sugar molecules to proteins. Glycation is a non-enzymatic process of adding free sugars to protein covalently, which occurs spontaneously in the bloodstream. Glycosylation, on the other hand, is a post-translational modification process that takes place in the endoplasmic reticulum and Golgi apparatus while producing a functional protein. Even though there are some similarities between glycation and glycosylation, this article discusses the difference between glycation and glycosylation.


1. Overview and Key Difference
2. What is Glycation
3. What is Glycosylation
4. Similarities Between Glycation and Glycosylation
5. Side by Side Comparison – Glycation vs Glycosylation in Tabular Form
6. Summary

What is Glycation?

Glycation is a non-enzymatic process that covalently adds free sugars to protein. Since it is non-enzymatic, glycation occurs spontaneously in the bloodstream. Hence, this process is not under the control of an enzyme. Glycation irreversibly adds sugars or sugar degradative products to proteins. Moreover, glycation is a type of protein-damaging process. Therefore, it reduces the stability and functionality of proteins.

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