Record Information
Creation Date2005-11-16 15:48:42 UTC
Update Date2013-02-09 00:09:16 UTC
Secondary Accession NumbersNone
Metabolite Identification
Common NameGlycogen
DescriptionGlycogen is a highly-branched polymer of about 30,000 glucose residues and has a molecular weight between 106 and 107 daltons (4.8 million approx.). Most of Glc units are linked by alpha-1,4 glycosidic bonds, approximately 1 in 12 Glc residues also makes -1,6 glycosidic bond with a second Glc which results in the creation of a branch. Glycogen only has one reducing end and a large number of non-reducing ends with a free hydroxyl group at carbon 4. The glycogen granules contain both glycogen and the enzymes of glycogen synthesis (glycogenesis) and degradation (glycogenolysis). The enzymes are nested between the outer branches of the glycogen molecules and act on the non-reducing ends. Therefore, the many non-reducing end-branches of glycogen facilitate its rapid synthesis and breakdown. In hypoglycemia caused by excessive insulin, liver glycogen levels are high, but the high insulin level prevents the glycogenolysis necessary to maintain normal blood sugar levels. Glucagon is a common treatment for this type of hypoglycemia. Glycogen is a polysaccharide that is the principal storage form of glucose (Glc) in animal and human cells. Glycogen is found in the form of granules in the cytosol in many cell types. Hepatocytes (liver cells) have the highest concentration of it - up to 8% of the fresh weight in well fed state, or 100 to 120 g in an adult - giving liver a distinctive, 'starchy taste'. In the muscles, glycogen is found in a much lower concentration (1% of the muscle mass), but the total amount exceeds that in liver. Small amounts of glycogen are found in the kidneys, and even smaller amounts in certain glial cells in the brain and white blood cells.
  1. Animal starch
  2. Glycogen
  3. Liver starch
  4. Lyoglycogen
  5. Phytoglycogen
Chemical FormulaC24H42O21
Average Molecular Weight666.5777
Monoisotopic Molecular Weight666.221858406
IUPAC Name(2R,3R,4S,5S,6R)-2-{[(2R,3S,4R,5R,6R)-4,5-dihydroxy-6-{[(2R,3S,4R,5R,6S)-4,5,6-trihydroxy-2-(hydroxymethyl)oxan-3-yl]oxy}-2-({[(2S,3R,4S,5S,6R)-3,4,5-trihydroxy-6-(hydroxymethyl)oxan-2-yl]oxy}methyl)oxan-3-yl]oxy}-6-(hydroxymethyl)oxane-3,4,5-triol
Traditional IUPAC Name(2R,3R,4S,5S,6R)-2-{[(2R,3S,4R,5R,6R)-4,5-dihydroxy-6-{[(2R,3S,4R,5R,6S)-4,5,6-trihydroxy-2-(hydroxymethyl)oxan-3-yl]oxy}-2-({[(2S,3R,4S,5S,6R)-3,4,5-trihydroxy-6-(hydroxymethyl)oxan-2-yl]oxy}methyl)oxan-3-yl]oxy}-6-(hydroxymethyl)oxane-3,4,5-triol
CAS Registry Number9005-79-2
InChI Identifier
Chemical Taxonomy
KingdomOrganic Compounds
Super ClassCarbohydrates and Carbohydrate Conjugates
Sub ClassTetrahexoses
Other Descriptors
  • Aliphatic Heteropolycyclic Compounds
  • 1,2 Diol
  • Acetal
  • Glycosyl Compound
  • Hemiacetal
  • O Glycosyl Compound
  • Oxane
  • Primary Alcohol
  • Secondary Alcohol
Direct ParentTetrahexoses
StatusDetected and Quantified
  • Drug metabolite
  • Endogenous
  • Component of Starch and sucrose metabolism
  • Waste products
ApplicationNot Available
Cellular locations
  • Cytoplasm (predicted from logP)
Physical Properties
Experimental Properties
Melting Point270 - 280 °CNot Available
Boiling PointNot AvailableNot Available
Water SolubilityNot AvailableNot Available
LogPNot AvailableNot Available
Predicted Properties
water solubility343 g/LALOGPS
pKa (strongest acidic)11.19ChemAxon
pKa (strongest basic)-3.7ChemAxon
physiological charge0ChemAxon
hydrogen acceptor count21ChemAxon
hydrogen donor count14ChemAxon
polar surface area347.83ChemAxon
rotatable bond count10ChemAxon
Biological Properties
Cellular Locations
  • Cytoplasm (predicted from logP)
Biofluid Locations
  • Blood
  • Urine
Tissue Location
  • Adipose Tissue
  • Adrenal Cortex
  • Adrenal Gland
  • Adrenal Medulla
  • Brain
  • Epidermis
  • Fibroblasts
  • Kidney
  • Liver
  • Muscle
  • Myelin
  • Nerve Cells
  • Neuron
  • Pancreas
  • Placenta
  • Platelet
  • Skeletal Muscle
  • Stratum Corneum
  • Testes
Starch and Sucrose MetabolismSMP00058map00500
Normal Concentrations
BloodDetected and Quantified39.1 +/- 3.1 uMAdult (>18 years old)MaleNormal
  • Geigy Scient...
BloodDetected and Quantified43.3 +/- 3.4 uMAdult (>18 years old)BothNormal
  • Geigy Scient...
UrineExpected but not QuantifiedNot ApplicableNot AvailableNot AvailableNormal
  • Not Applicable
Abnormal Concentrations
Not Available
Associated Disorders and Diseases
Disease ReferencesNone
Associated OMIM IDsNone
DrugBank IDNot Available
DrugBank Metabolite IDDBMET00509
Phenol Explorer Compound IDNot Available
Phenol Explorer Metabolite IDNot Available
FoodDB IDFDB022227
KNApSAcK IDNot Available
Chemspider ID388322
KEGG Compound IDC00182
BioCyc IDCPD0-971
BiGG IDNot Available
Wikipedia LinkGlycogen
NuGOwiki LinkHMDB00757
Metagene LinkHMDB00757
PubChem Compound439177
PDB IDNot Available
ChEBI ID28087
Synthesis ReferenceParodi A J; Krisman C R; Mordoh J In vitro synthesis of particulate glycogen from uridine diphosphate glucose. II. Some studies on the growth process. Archives of biochemistry and biophysics (1970), 141(1), 219-27.
Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS)Not Available
General References
  1. Zderic TW, Schenk S, Davidson CJ, Byerley LO, Coyle EF: Manipulation of dietary carbohydrate and muscle glycogen affects glucose uptake during exercise when fat oxidation is impaired by beta-adrenergic blockade. Am J Physiol Endocrinol Metab. 2004 Dec;287(6):E1195-201. Epub 2004 Aug 17. Pubmed: 15315908
  2. Schaart G, Hesselink RP, Keizer HA, van Kranenburg G, Drost MR, Hesselink MK: A modified PAS stain combined with immunofluorescence for quantitative analyses of glycogen in muscle sections. Histochem Cell Biol. 2004 Aug;122(2):161-9. Epub 2004 Aug 3. Pubmed: 15322861
  3. Wee SL, Williams C, Tsintzas K, Boobis L: Ingestion of a high-glycemic index meal increases muscle glycogen storage at rest but augments its utilization during subsequent exercise. J Appl Physiol. 2005 Aug;99(2):707-14. Epub 2005 Apr 14. Pubmed: 15831796
  4. Zehnder M, Muelli M, Buchli R, Kuehne G, Boutellier U: Further glycogen decrease during early recovery after eccentric exercise despite a high carbohydrate intake. Eur J Nutr. 2004 Jun;43(3):148-59. Epub 2004 Jan 6. Pubmed: 15168037
  5. Koopman R, Manders RJ, Jonkers RA, Hul GB, Kuipers H, van Loon LJ: Intramyocellular lipid and glycogen content are reduced following resistance exercise in untrained healthy males. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2006 Mar;96(5):525-34. Epub 2005 Dec 21. Pubmed: 16369816
  6. Jentjens R, Jeukendrup A: Determinants of post-exercise glycogen synthesis during short-term recovery. Sports Med. 2003;33(2):117-44. Pubmed: 12617691
  7. Ouwens DM, van der Zon GC, Maassen JA: Modulation of insulin-stimulated glycogen synthesis by Src Homology Phosphatase 2. Mol Cell Endocrinol. 2001 Apr 25;175(1-2):131-40. Pubmed: 11325523
  8. Koppersmith DL, Powers JM, Hennigar GR: Angiomatoid neuroblastoma with cytoplasmic glycogen: a case report and histogenetic considerations. Cancer. 1980 Feb;45(3):553-60. Pubmed: 7353205
  9. Kohler G, Boutellier U: Glycogen reduction in non-exercising muscle depends on blood lactate concentration. Eur J Appl Physiol. 2004 Aug;92(4-5):548-54. Pubmed: 15170570
  10. Crosson SM, Khan A, Printen J, Pessin JE, Saltiel AR: PTG gene deletion causes impaired glycogen synthesis and developmental insulin resistance. J Clin Invest. 2003 May;111(9):1423-32. Pubmed: 12727934
  11. Dube SN, Nayak BB, Das PK: Effect of foot-electroshock stress on cholinergic activity, tissue glycogen and blood sugar in albino rats. Indian J Physiol Pharmacol. 1978 Jan-Mar;22(1):24-32. Pubmed: 567191
  12. Chryssanthopoulos C, Williams C, Nowitz A, Bogdanis G: Skeletal muscle glycogen concentration and metabolic responses following a high glycaemic carbohydrate breakfast. J Sports Sci. 2004 Nov-Dec;22(11-12):1065-71. Pubmed: 15801500
  13. Steinberg GR, Watt MJ, McGee SL, Chan S, Hargreaves M, Febbraio MA, Stapleton D, Kemp BE: Reduced glycogen availability is associated with increased AMPKalpha2 activity, nuclear AMPKalpha2 protein abundance, and GLUT4 mRNA expression in contracting human skeletal muscle. Appl Physiol Nutr Metab. 2006 Jun;31(3):302-12. Pubmed: 16770359
  14. Hudson ER, Pan DA, James J, Lucocq JM, Hawley SA, Green KA, Baba O, Terashima T, Hardie DG: A novel domain in AMP-activated protein kinase causes glycogen storage bodies similar to those seen in hereditary cardiac arrhythmias. Curr Biol. 2003 May 13;13(10):861-6. Pubmed: 12747836
  15. van Loon LJ, Murphy R, Oosterlaar AM, Cameron-Smith D, Hargreaves M, Wagenmakers AJ, Snow R: Creatine supplementation increases glycogen storage but not GLUT-4 expression in human skeletal muscle. Clin Sci (Lond). 2004 Jan;106(1):99-106. Pubmed: 14507259
  16. Tomihira M, Kawasaki E, Nakajima H, Imamura Y, Sato Y, Sata M, Kage M, Sugie H, Nunoi K: Intermittent and recurrent hepatomegaly due to glycogen storage in a patient with type 1 diabetes: genetic analysis of the liver glycogen phosphorylase gene (PYGL). Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2004 Aug;65(2):175-82. Pubmed: 15223230
  17. McVie-Wylie AJ, Ding EY, Lawson T, Serra D, Migone FK, Pressley D, Mizutani M, Kikuchi T, Chen YT, Amalfitano A: Multiple muscles in the AMD quail can be "cross-corrected" of pathologic glycogen accumulation after intravenous injection of an [E1-, polymerase-] adenovirus vector encoding human acid-alpha-glucosidase. J Gene Med. 2003 May;5(5):399-406. Pubmed: 12731088
  18. Price TB, Laurent D, Petersen KF: 13C/31P NMR studies on the role of glucose transport/phosphorylation in human glycogen supercompensation. Int J Sports Med. 2003 May;24(4):238-44. Pubmed: 12784164
  19. Tanis AA, Rietveld T, Wattimena JL, van den Berg JW, Swart GR: The 13CO2 breath test for liver glycogen oxidation after 3-day labeling of the liver with a naturally 13C-enriched diet. Nutrition. 2003 May;19(5):432-7. Pubmed: 12714096
  20. Devries MC, Hamadeh MJ, Graham TE, Tarnopolsky MA: 17beta-estradiol supplementation decreases glucose rate of appearance and disappearance with no effect on glycogen utilization during moderate intensity exercise in men. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2005 Nov;90(11):6218-25. Epub 2005 Aug 23. Pubmed: 16118338


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