Affinity purified Lens culinaris lectin (LCA) is composed of four subunits that consists of an α-chain (MW: 5.7 kDa) and β-chain (MW: 17.5 kDa). It has a carbohydrate specificity toward α-D-mannose and α-D-glucose, eluting with the sugar MeαMan+MeαGlc. This lectin is useful in affinity chromatography columns for the separation of glycoconjugates. The two isomers LCA-A and LCA-B agglutinates human red blood cells, although not blood group specific. Activity of LCA is determined by haemagglutination with human blood and agglutinates a 2% suspension of human erythrocytes at a lectin concentration of 8µg/ml. LCA requires calcium and manganese ions for binding. See other LCA conjugates.
Colloidal gold can be used to visualize localization of specific saccharide moieties and examine the distribution of plasma membrane glycoproteins based on the binding pattern of Lens culinaris (Lentil) Lectin (LCA/LCH). Colloidal gold labeled lectins can be viewed via electron microscopy.