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Endogenous lectins (galectins-1 and -3) as probes to detect differentiation-dependent alterations in human squamous cell carcinomas of the oropharynx and larynx.

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Expression of glycan determinants for in situ binding is the prerequisite for a productive protein (lectin)-carbohydrate recognition. Labeled tissue lectins as tools are preferable to plant lectins to assess this parameter, because plant and animal lectins with identical saccharide specification can well differ in their profiles of oligosaccharide binding pattern. Due to their relevance in growth control and matrix adhesion the family of galectins (galactoside-binding metal ion independent animal lectins) is receiving increasing utilization in human biology. Employing biotinylated galectin-1 and galectin-3 we studied the expression of binding sites for these galectins in normal human squamous epithelium and human carcinomas from the oropharyngeal region and larynx in relation to the expression of LP-34+ cytokeratins by the procedure of double labeling. Tissue sites accessible for galectin-1 were located in all layers of normal epithelium and in tumor cells. In contrast, galectin-3 binding was suprabasal in the normal epithelium and in tumor cells exhibiting signs of keratinization. These results reveal differences in the localization of accessible sites for the two galectins. Relating to cell development galectin-3 appeared to display affinity to areas with increased extent of differentiation.
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Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Charles University, First Faculty of Medicine, Institute of Anatomy, Prague, Czech Republic.

Publication date: April 1, 2000

More about this publication?
  • The International Journal of Molecular Medicine is a monthly, peer-reviewed journal devoted to the publication of high quality studies related to the molecular mechanisms of human disease. The journal welcomes research on all aspects of molecular and clinical research, ranging from biochemistry to immunology, pathology, genetics, human genomics, microbiology, molecular pathogenesis, molecular cardiology, molecular surgery and molecular psychology.

    The International Journal of Molecular Medicine aims to provide an insight for researchers within the community in regard to developing molecular tools and identifying molecular targets for the diagnosis and treatment of a diverse number of human diseases.
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