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PLoS One. 2011;6(10):e26560. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0026560. Epub 2011 Oct 18.

Galectin-1-binding glycoforms of haptoglobin with altered intracellular trafficking, and increase in metastatic breast cancer patients.

Author information

1
Section Microbiology, Immunology, Glycobiology, Department of Laboratory Medicine, Lund University, Lund, Sweden. michael.carlsson@med.lu.se

Abstract

Sera from 25 metastatic breast cancer patients and 25 healthy controls were subjected to affinity chromatography using immobilized galectin-1. Serum from the healthy subjects contained on average 1.2 mg per ml (range 0.7-2.2) galectin-1 binding glycoproteins, whereas serum from the breast cancer patients contained on average 2.2 mg/ml (range 0.8-3.9), with a higher average for large primary tumours. The major bound glycoproteins were α-2-macroglobulin, IgM and haptoglobin. Both the IgM and haptoglobin concentrations were similar in cancer compared to control sera, but the percentage bound to galectin-1 was lower for IgM and higher for haptoglobin: about 50% (range 20-80) in cancer sera and about 30% (range 25-50) in healthy sera. Galectin-1 binding and non-binding fractions were separated by affinity chromatography from pooled haptoglobin from healthy sera. The N-glycans of each fraction were analyzed by mass spectrometry, and the structural differences and galectin-1 mutants were used to identify possible galectin-1 binding sites. Galectin-1 binding and non-binding fractions were also analyzed regarding their haptoglobin function. Both were similar in forming complex with haemoglobin and mediate its uptake into alternatively activated macrophages. However, after uptake there was a dramatic difference in intracellular targeting, with the galectin-1 non-binding fraction going to a LAMP-2 positive compartment (lysosomes), while the galectin-1 binding fraction went to larger galectin-1 positive granules. In conclusion, galectin-1 detects a new type of functional biomarker for cancer: a specific type of glycoform of haptoglobin, and possibly other serum glycoproteins, with a different function after uptake into tissue cells.

PMID:
22028908
PMCID:
PMC3196588
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0026560
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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