The Role of Galectins in Tumor Progression, Treatment and Prognosis of Gynecological Cancers.
ABSTRACT: Galectins are the member of soluble proteins that bind with ?-galactoside containing glycans. These proteins have been considered to be associated in various important events such as different types of cancers. It has been found that galectins could contribute to neoplastic transformation or regulate cell growth, cell apoptosis, and immune cells, causing tumor invasion, progression, metastasis and angiogenesis. Somehow, galectins are also found to exert a protective effect on cancer in a tissue-dependent way. These glycans binding proteins have been shown to be involved in the regulation of different tumor suppressor genes and oncogenes with their possible roles in human cancers. Objective of the current review is to summarize the role of galectin-1, -3 -7, and -9 in tumorigenesis of gynecological cancers. Galectin protein may be a potential therapeutic target in gynecological malignancies due to reported radio- and chemo- sensitivities, immunotherapeutic, anti-angiogenic and anti-proliferative activities. This review considers the evidence for the future research that how galectins may be important in the progression and treatment of gynecological cancers along with its potent use as a novel prognostic marker.
Project description:The biological recognition of human milk glycans (HMGs) is poorly understood. Because HMGs are rich in galactose we explored whether they might interact with human galectins, which bind galactose-containing glycans and are highly expressed in epithelial cells and other cell types. We screened a number of human galectins for their binding to HMGs on a shotgun glycan microarray consisting of 247 HMGs derived from human milk, as well as to a defined HMG microarray. Recombinant human galectins (hGal)-1, -3, -4, -7, -8 and -9 bound selectively to glycans, with each galectin recognizing a relatively unique binding motif; by contrast hGal-2 did not recognize HMGs, but did bind to the human blood group A Type 2 determinants on other microarrays. Unlike other galectins, hGal-7 preferentially bound to glycans expressing a terminal Type 1 (Gal?1-3GlcNAc) sequence, a motif that had eluded detection on non-HMG glycan microarrays. Interactions with HMGs were confirmed in a solution setting by isothermal titration microcalorimetry and hapten inhibition experiments. These results demonstrate that galectins selectively bind to HMGs and suggest the possibility that galectin-HMG interactions may play a role in infant immunity.
Project description:Galectins compose a protein family defined by a conserved sequence motif conferring affinity for ?-galactose-containing glycans. Moreover, galectins gain higher affinity and fine-tune specificity by glycan interactions at sites adjacent to their ?-galactoside-binding site, as revealed by extensive testing against panels of purified glycans. However, in cells, galectins bind glycans on glycoproteins and glycolipids in the context of other cellular components, such as at the cell surface. Because of difficulties in characterizing natural cellular environments, we currently lack a detailed understanding of galectin-binding specificities in the cellular context. To address this challenge, we used a panel of genetically stable glycosylation mutated CHO cells that express defined glycans to evaluate the binding affinities of 10 different carbohydrate-recognition domains in galectins to N-glycans and mucin-type O-glycans. Using flow cytometry, we measured the cell-surface binding of the galectins. Moreover, we used fluorescence anisotropy to determine the galectin affinities to recombinant erythropoietin used as a reporter glycoprotein produced by the glycoengineered cells and to synthetic N-glycans with defined branch structures. We found that all galectins, apart from galectin-8N, require complex N-glycans for high-affinity binding. Galectin-8N targeted both N- and O-linked glycans with high affinity, preferring 2,3-sialylated N-acetyllactosamine (LacNAc) structures. Furthermore, we found that 2,3-sialylation suppresses high-affinity binding of select galectins, including galectin-2, -3, -4N, and -7. Structural modeling provided a basis for interpreting the observed binding preferences. These results underscore the power of a glycoengineered platform to dissect the glycan-binding specificities of carbohydrate-binding proteins.
Project description:Galectins are a group of proteins that bind ?-galactosides through evolutionarily conserved sequence elements of the carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD). Proteins similar to galectins can be found in very primitive animals such as sponges. Each galectin has an individual carbohydrate binding preference and can be found in cytoplasm as well as in the nucleus. They also can be secreted through non-classical pathways and function extracellularly. Experimental and clinical data demonstrate a correlation between galectin expression and tumor progression and metastasis, and therefore, galectins have the potential to serve as reliable tumor markers. In this review, we describe the expression and role of galectins in different cancers and their clinical applications for diagnostic use.
Project description:Galectins are ?-galactoside-binding lectins that regulate diverse cell behaviors, including adhesion, migration, proliferation, and apoptosis. Galectins can be expressed both intracellularly and extracellularly, and extracellular galectins mediate their effects by associating with cell-surface oligosaccharides. Despite intensive current interest in galectins, strikingly few studies have focused on a key enzyme that acts to inhibit galectin signaling, namely ?-galactoside ?2,6-sialyltransferase (ST6Gal-I). ST6Gal-I adds an ?2,6-linked sialic acid to the terminal galactose of N-linked glycans, and this modification blocks galectin binding to ?-galactosides. This minireview summarizes the evidence suggesting that ST6Gal-I activity serves as an "off switch" for galectin function.
Project description:Galectins are glycan-binding proteins that contain one or two carbohydrate domains and mediate multiple biological functions. By analyzing clinical tumor samples, the abnormal expression of galectins is known to be linked to the development, progression and metastasis of cancers. Galectins also have diverse functions on different immune cells that either promote inflammation or dampen T cell-mediated immune responses, depending on cognate receptors on target cells. Thus, tumor-derived galectins can have bifunctional effects on tumor and immune cells. This review focuses on the biological effects of galectin-1, galectin-3 and galectin-9 in various cancers and discusses anticancer therapies that target these molecules.
Project description:Aberrant glycosylation of cell membrane proteins is a universal feature of cancer cells. One of the most common glycosylation changes in epithelial cancer is the increased occurrence of the oncofetal Thomsen-Friedenreich disaccharide Gal?1-3GalNAc (T or TF antigen), which appears in about 90% of cancers but is rarely seen in normal epithelium. Over the past few years, increasing evidence has revealed that the increased appearance of TF antigen on cancer cell surface plays an active role in promoting cancer progression and metastasis by interaction with the ?-galactoside-binding proteins, galectins, which themselves are also frequently overexpressed in cancer and pre-cancerous conditions. This review summarizes the current understanding of the molecular mechanism of the increased TF occurrence in cancer, the structural nature, and biological impact of TF interaction with galectins, in particular galectin-1 and -3, on cancer progression and metastasis.
Project description:Galectins are a family of soluble ?-galactoside-binding proteins with diverse glycan-dependent and glycan-independent functions outside and inside the cell. Human cells express twelve out of sixteen recognized mammalian galectin genes and their expression profiles are very different between cell types and tissues. In this review, we summarize the current knowledge on the changes in the expression of individual galectins at mRNA and protein levels in different types of differentiating cells and the effects of recombinant galectins on cellular differentiation. A new model of galectin regulation is proposed considering the change in O-GlcNAc homeostasis between progenitor/stem cells and mature differentiated cells. The recognition of galectins as regulatory factors controlling cell differentiation and self-renewal is essential for developmental and cancer biology to develop innovative strategies for prevention and targeted treatment of proliferative diseases, tissue regeneration, and stem-cell therapy.
Project description:Galectins represent ?-galactoside-binding proteins and are known to bind Gal?1-3/4GlcNAc disaccharides (abbreviated as LN1 and LN2, respectively). Despite high sequence and structural homology shared by the carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD) of all galectin members, how each galectin displays different sugar-binding specificity still remains ambiguous. Herein we provided the first structural evidence of human galectins-1, 3-CRD and 7 in complex with LN1. Galectins-1 and 3 were shown to have higher affinity for LN2 than for LN1, while galectin-7 displayed the reversed specificity. In comparison with the previous LN2-complexed structures, the results indicated that the average glycosidic torsion angle of galectin-bound LN1 (?(LN1) ? 135°) was significantly differed from that of galectin-bound LN2 (?(LN2 )? -108°), i.e. the GlcNAc moiety adopted a different orientation to maintain essential interactions. Furthermore, we also identified an Arg-Asp/Glu-Glu-Arg salt-bridge network and the corresponding loop (to position the second Asp/Glu residue) critical for the LN1/2-binding preference.
Project description:The inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD), which include mainly Crohn's disease (CD) and ulcerative colitis (UC), are common chronic inflammatory conditions of the digestive system. The diagnosis of IBD relies on the use of a combination of factors including symptoms, endoscopy and levels of serum proteins such as C-reactive protein (CRP) or faecal calprotectin. Currently there is no single reliable biomarker to determine IBD. Galectins are a family of galactoside-binding proteins that are commonly altered in the circulation of disease conditions such as cancer and inflammation. This study investigated serum galectin levels as possible biomarkers in determining IBD and IBD disease activity. Levels of galectins-1, -2, -3, -4, -7 and -8 were analysed in 208 samples from ambulant IBD patients (97 CD, 71 UC) patients and 40 from healthy people. Disease activity was assessed using Harvey-Bradshaw Index for CD and simple clinical colitis activity index for UC. The relationship of each galectin in determining IBD and IBD disease activity were analysed and compared with current IBD biomarker CRP. It was found that serum level of galectin-1 and -3, but not galectins-2, -4, -7 and -8, were significantly higher in IBD patients than in healthy people. At cut-off of 4.1ng/ml, galectin-1 differentiated IBD from healthy controls with 71% sensitivity and 87% specificity. At cut-off of 38.5ng/ml, galectin-3 separated IBD from healthy controls with 53% sensitivity and 87% specificity. None of the galectins however were able to distinguish active disease from remission in UC or CD. Thus, levels of galectins-1 and -3 are significantly elevated in both UC and CD patients compared to healthy people. Although the increased galectin levels are not able to separate active and inactive UC and CD, they may have the potential to be developed as useful biomarkers for IBD diagnosis either alone or in combination with other biomarkers.
Project description:Galectins are a family of small, highly conserved, molecular effectors that mediate various biological processes, including chemotaxis and angiogenesis, and that function by interacting with various cell surface glycoconjugates, usually targeting ?-galactoside epitopes. Because of their significant involvement in various biological functions and pathologies, galectins have become a focus of therapeutic discovery for clinical intervention against cancer, among other pathological disorders. In this review, we focus on understanding galectin structure-function relationships, their mechanisms of action on the molecular level, and targeting them for therapeutic intervention against cancer.