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Galectin-3 interaction with Thomsen-Friedenreich Disaccharide on cancer-associated MUC1 causes increased cancer cell endothelial adhesion

Yu, L. G., Andrews, N., Zhao, Q., McKean, D., Williams, J. F., Connor, L. J., Gerasimenko, Oleg Vsevolodovich ORCID:, Hilkens, J., Hirabayashi, J., Kasai, K. and Rhodes, J. M. 2006. Galectin-3 interaction with Thomsen-Friedenreich Disaccharide on cancer-associated MUC1 causes increased cancer cell endothelial adhesion. Journal of Biological Chemistry 282 (1) , pp. 773-781. 10.1074/jbc.M606862200

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Patients with metastatic cancer commonly have increased serum galectin-3 concentrations, but it is not known whether this has any functional implications for cancer progression. We report that MUC1, a large transmembrane mucin protein that is overexpressed and aberrantly glycosylated in epithelial cancer, is a natural ligand for galectin-3. Recombinant galectin-3 at concentrations (0.2-1.0 μg/ml) similar to those found in the sera of patients with metastatic cancer increased adhesion of MUC1-expressing human breast (ZR-75-1) and colon (HT29-5F7) cancer cells to human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVEC) by 111% (111 ± 21%, mean ± S.D.) and 93% (93 ± 17%), respectively. Recombinant galectin-3 also increased adhesion to HUVEC of MUC1 transfected HCA1.7+ human breast epithelial cells that express MUC1 bearing the oncofetal Thomsen-Friedenreich antigen (Galβ1,3 GalNAc-α (TF)) but did not affect adhesion of MUC1-negative HCA1.7-cells. MUC1-transfected, Ras-transformed, canine kidney epithelial-like (MDE9.2+) cells, bearing MUC1 that predominantly carries sialyl-TF, only demonstrated an adhesive response to galectin-3 after sialidase pretreatment. Furthermore, galectin-3-mediated adhesion of HCA1.7+ to HUVEC was reduced by O-glycanase pretreatment of the cells to remove TF. Recombinant galectin-3 caused focal disappearance of cell surface MUC1 in HCA1.7+ cells, suggesting clustering of MUC1. Co-incubation with antibodies against E-Selectin or CD44H, but not integrin-β1, ICAM-1 or VCAM-1, largely abolished the epithelial cell adhesion to HUVEC induced by galectin-3. Thus, galectin-3, by interacting with cancer-associated MUC1 via TF, promotes cancer cell adhesion to endothelium by revealing epithelial adhesion molecules that are otherwise concealed by MUC1. This suggests a critical role for circulating galectin-3 in cancer metastasis and highlights the functional importance of altered cell surface glycosylation in cancer progression.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Biosciences
Publisher: American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
ISSN: 0021-9258
Last Modified: 27 Oct 2022 08:46

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