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Curr Opin Immunol. 2013 Apr;25(2):206-13. doi: 10.1016/j.coi.2012.11.003. Epub 2012 Dec 6.

Leveraging fluorinated glucosamine action to boost antitumor immunity.

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  • Department of Dermatology, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, MA 02115, United States. cdimitroff@rics.bwh.harvard.edu


N-acetyllactosaminyl glycans are key regulators of the vitality and effector function of antitumor T cells. When galectin-1 (Gal-1) binds N-acetyllactosamines on select membrane glycoproteins on antitumor T cells, these cells either undergo apoptosis or become immunoregulatory. Methods designed to antagonize expression or function of these N-acetyllactosamines on N-glycans and O-glycans have thus intensified. Since tumors can produce an abundance of Gal-1, Gal-1 is considered a critical factor for protecting tumor cells from T cell-mediated antitumor activity. Recent efforts have capitalized on the anti-N-acetyllactosamine action of fluorinated glucosamines to treat antitumor T cells, resulting in diminished Gal-1-binding and higher antitumor T cell levels. In this perspective, the prospect of fluorinated glucosamines in eliminating N-acetyllactosamines on antitumor T cells to boost antitumor immunity is presented.

Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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