Expanding the universe of cytokines and pattern recognition receptors: galectins and glycans in innate immunity.
ABSTRACT Effective immunity relies on the recognition of pathogens and tumors by innate immune cells through diverse pattern recognition receptors (PRRs) that lead to initiation of signaling processes and secretion of pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Galectins, a family of endogenous lectins widely expressed in infected and neoplastic tissues have emerged as part of the portfolio of soluble mediators and pattern recognition receptors responsible for eliciting and controlling innate immunity. These highly conserved glycan-binding proteins can control immune cell processes through binding to specific glycan structures on pathogens and tumors or by acting intracellularly via modulation of selective signaling pathways. Recent findings demonstrate that various galectin family members influence the fate and physiology of different innate immune cells including polymorphonuclear neutrophils, mast cells, macrophages, and dendritic cells. Moreover, several pathogens may actually utilize galectins as a mechanism of host invasion. In this review, we aim to highlight and integrate recent discoveries that have led to our current understanding of the role of galectins in host-pathogen interactions and innate immunity. Challenges for the future will embrace the rational manipulation of galectin-glycan interactions to instruct and shape innate immunity during microbial infections, inflammation, and cancer.
Article: Galectin-1 and galectin-3 expression profiles in classically and alternatively activated human macrophages.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Galectins have been identified as modulators of many monocyte/macrophage functions. In the response to a wide range of environmental cues macrophages may exhibit different biochemical and biological characteristics, but two main subtypes, classically (M1) and alternatively (M2) activated macrophages have been recognized. To contribute to elucidation of role and regulation of galectin-1 and galectin-3 in differently activated macrophages we explored their expression profiles in these cells. Human monocytes obtained from blood donors were differentiated into classically (M1) and alternatively (M2a/M2c) activated macrophages. Gene and protein expression levels of intra- and extracellular galectins were investigated by qRT-PCR, Western-blot, flow cytometry, and ELISA while cytokine and surface receptor expression profiling was performed by flow cytometry. Differentiation/polarization of human monocytes into classically (M1) and alternatively (M2a/M2c) activated macrophages was followed by profound changes of galectin-3 expression and its proteolytic cleavage. Expression and secretion of Gal-3 was tightly regulated and significantly differed among classically (M1) and alternatively (M2a/M2c) activated macrophages, while the differences of galectin-1 expression profiles were not as pronounced. Human monocytes exhibited high amount of free galectin-3 receptors, while on both types of activated macrophages were fully saturated. Galectin-3 is more distinctive descriptor of macrophages differentiation/activation than galectin-1. Its specific expression and secretion pattern in M1 vs. M2a/M2c macrophages contributes to better understanding of its role and regulation in these cells. Recognition of distinct galectin-1 and galectin-3 expression profiles in differently activated macrophages provides a new insight on biological characteristics of these cells and sheds a new light of galectin-3 as a modulator of individual macrophage subset. This article is part of a Special Issue entitled Glycoproteomics.Biochimica et Biophysica Acta 12/2011; 1820(9):1383-90. · 4.66 Impact Factor
[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: The dramatic increase in the incidence and severity of allergy and asthma has been proposed to be linked with an altered exposure to, and colonization by, micro-organisms, particularly early in life. However, other lifestyle factors such as diet and physical activity are also thought to be important, and it is likely that multiple environmental factors with currently unrecognized interactions contribute to the atopic state. This review will focus on the potential role of microbial metabolites in immunoregulatory functions and highlights the known molecular mechanisms, which may mediate the interactions between diet, microbiota, and protection from allergy and asthma.Allergy 01/2012; 67(4):451-61. · 6.27 Impact Factor