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1.  Timing of Galectin-1 Exposure Differentially Modulates Nipah Virus Entry and Syncytium Formation in Endothelial Cells 
Journal of Virology  2014;89(5):2520-2529.
Nipah virus (NiV) is a deadly emerging enveloped paramyxovirus that primarily targets human endothelial cells. Endothelial cells express the innate immune effector galectin-1 that we have previously shown can bind to specific N-glycans on the NiV envelope fusion glycoprotein (F). NiV-F mediates fusion of infected endothelial cells into syncytia, resulting in endothelial disruption and hemorrhage. Galectin-1 is an endogenous carbohydrate-binding protein that binds to specific glycans on NiV-F to reduce endothelial cell fusion, an effect that may reduce pathophysiologic sequelae of NiV infection. However, galectins play multiple roles in regulating host-pathogen interactions; for example, galectins can promote attachment of HIV to T cells and macrophages and attachment of HSV-1 to keratinocytes but can also inhibit influenza entry into airway epithelial cells. Using live Nipah virus, in the present study, we demonstrate that galectin-1 can enhance NiV attachment to and infection of primary human endothelial cells by bridging glycans on the viral envelope to host cell glycoproteins. In order to exhibit an enhancing effect, galectin-1 must be present during the initial phase of virus attachment; in contrast, addition of galectin-1 postinfection results in reduced production of progeny virus and syncytium formation. Thus, galectin-1 can have dual and opposing effects on NiV infection of human endothelial cells. While various roles for galectin family members in microbial-host interactions have been described, we report opposing effects of the same galectin family member on a specific virus, with the timing of exposure during the viral life cycle determining the outcome.
IMPORTANCE Nipah virus is an emerging pathogen that targets endothelial cells lining blood vessels; the high mortality rate (up to 70%) in Nipah virus infections results from destruction of these cells and resulting catastrophic hemorrhage. Host factors that promote or prevent Nipah virus infection are not well understood. Endogenous human lectins, such as galectin-1, can function as pattern recognition receptors to reduce infection and initiate immune responses; however, lectins can also be exploited by microbes to enhance infection of host cells. We found that galectin-1, which is made by inflamed endothelial cells, can both promote Nipah virus infection of endothelial cells by “bridging” the virus to the cell, as well as reduce production of progeny virus and reduce endothelial cell fusion and damage, depending on timing of galectin-1 exposure. This is the first report of spatiotemporal opposing effects of a host lectin for a virus in one type of host cell.
PMCID: PMC4325760  PMID: 25505064
2.  Novel Innate Immune Functions for Galectin-1: Galectin-1 Inhibits Cell Fusion by Nipah Virus Envelope Glycoproteins and Augments Dendritic Cell Secretion of Proinflammatory Cytokines1 
Galectin-1 (gal-1), an endogenous lectin secreted by a variety of cell types, has pleiotropic immunomodulatory functions, including regulation of lymphocyte survival and cytokine secretion in autoimmune, transplant disease, and parasitic infection models. However, the role of gal-1 in viral infections is unknown. Nipah virus (NiV) is an emerging pathogen that causes severe, often fatal, febrile encephalitis. The primary targets of NiV are endothelial cells. NiV infection of endothelial cells results in cell-cell fusion and syncytia formation triggered by the fusion (F) and attachment (G) envelope glycoproteins of NiV that bear glycan structures recognized by gal-1. In the present study, we report that NiV envelope-mediated cell-cell fusion is blocked by gal-1. This inhibition is specific to the Paramyxoviridae family because gal-1 did not inhibit fusion triggered by envelope glycoproteins of other viruses, including two retroviruses and a pox virus, but inhibited fusion triggered by envelope glycoproteins of the related Hendra virus and another paramyxovirus. The physiologic dimeric form of gal-1 is required for fusion inhibition because a monomeric gal-1 mutant had no inhibitory effect on cell fusion. gal-1 binds to specific N-glycans on NiV glycoproteins and aberrantly oligomerizes NiV-F and NiV-G, indicating a mechanism for fusion inhibition. gal-1 also increases dendritic cell production of proinflammatory cytokines such as IL-6, known to be protective in the setting of other viral diseases such as Ebola infections. Thus, gal-1 may have direct antiviral effects and may also augment the innate immune response against this emerging pathogen.
PMCID: PMC4428613  PMID: 15972675
3.  Multiple Novel Functions of Henipavirus O-glycans: The First O-glycan Functions Identified in the Paramyxovirus Family 
PLoS Pathogens  2016;12(2):e1005445.
O-linked glycosylation is a ubiquitous protein modification in organisms belonging to several kingdoms. Both microbial and host protein glycans are used by many pathogens for host invasion and immune evasion, yet little is known about the roles of O-glycans in viral pathogenesis. Reportedly, there is no single function attributed to O-glycans for the significant paramyxovirus family. The paramyxovirus family includes many important pathogens, such as measles, mumps, parainfluenza, metapneumo- and the deadly Henipaviruses Nipah (NiV) and Hendra (HeV) viruses. Paramyxoviral cell entry requires the coordinated actions of two viral membrane glycoproteins: the attachment (HN/H/G) and fusion (F) glycoproteins. O-glycan sites in HeV G were recently identified, facilitating use of the attachment protein of this deadly paramyxovirus as a model to study O-glycan functions. We mutated the identified HeV G O-glycosylation sites and found mutants with altered cell-cell fusion, G conformation, G/F association, viral entry in a pseudotyped viral system, and, quite unexpectedly, pseudotyped viral F protein incorporation and processing phenotypes. These are all important functions of viral glycoproteins. These phenotypes were broadly conserved for equivalent NiV mutants. Thus our results identify multiple novel and pathologically important functions of paramyxoviral O-glycans, paving the way to study O-glycan functions in other paramyxoviruses and enveloped viruses.
Author Summary
Glycosylation is a protein modification process that occurs inside cells, in which specific types of sugars (glycans) are added to certain amino acids in some proteins. Glycosylation happens for many organisms, from microbes to mammals, including many pathogens. Altered glycosylation is increasingly being associated with auto-immune diseases and cancer, highlighting the need to better understand glycosylation. There are two types of sugars added during the glycosylation process: N-glycans and O-glycans. While the roles of N-glycans have been extensively reported for many organisms, the roles of O-glycans remain largely unknown, particularly for viruses. The paramyxoviruses are a medically important family of viruses that include the highly lethal Hendra (HeV) and Nipah (NiV) viruses. Viral entry into host cells and spread from cell to cell relies on two viral proteins: G and F. Here we mutated known O-glycan locations in the HeV and NiV G proteins. Loss of O-glycans affected several viral processes crucial to viral entry and spread from cell to cell. Our results are the first reported functions for paramyxoviral O-glycans, contributing to the field of viral entry and spread, and helping pave the way for future functional studies in other pathogens.
PMCID: PMC4750917  PMID: 26867212
4.  Microbe–Host Interactions are Positively and Negatively Regulated by Galectin–Glycan Interactions 
Microbe–host interactions are complex processes that are directly and indirectly regulated by a variety of factors, including microbe presentation of specific molecular signatures on the microbial surface, as well as host cell presentation of receptors that recognize these pathogen signatures. Cell surface glycans are one important class of microbial signatures that are recognized by a variety of host cell lectins. Host cell lectins that recognize microbial glycans include members of the galectin family of lectins that recognize specific glycan ligands on viruses, bacteria, fungi, and parasites. In this review, we will discuss the ways that the interactions of microbial glycans with host cell galectins positively and negatively regulate pathogen attachment, invasion, and survival, as well as regulate host responses that mitigate microbial pathogenesis.
PMCID: PMC4061488  PMID: 24995007
galectin; cell surface glycans; microbial pathogen; virus; bacteria
5.  Galectin-1 Regulates Tissue Exit of Specific Dendritic Cell Populations* 
The Journal of Biological Chemistry  2015;290(37):22662-22677.
Background: Galectins regulate immune cell migration.
Results: Galectin-1 inhibits immunogenic, but not tolerogenic, dendritic cell migration through clustering glycans on CD43.
Conclusion: Galectin-1 clustering of CD43 on immunogenic dendritic cells is a novel mechanism controlling tissue exit of different dendritic cell populations.
Significance: Inhibition of immunogenic dendritic cell tissue exit is a novel function for galectin-1 in dampening immune responses.
During inflammation, dendritic cells emigrate from inflamed tissue across the lymphatic endothelium into the lymphatic vasculature and travel to regional lymph nodes to initiate immune responses. However, the processes that regulate dendritic cell tissue egress and migration across the lymphatic endothelium are not well defined. The mammalian lectin galectin-1 is highly expressed by vascular endothelial cells in inflamed tissue and has been shown to regulate immune cell tissue entry into inflamed tissue. Here, we show that galectin-1 is also highly expressed by human lymphatic endothelial cells, and deposition of galectin-1 in extracellular matrix selectively regulates migration of specific human dendritic cell subsets. The presence of galectin-1 inhibits migration of immunogenic dendritic cells through the extracellular matrix and across lymphatic endothelial cells, but it has no effect on migration of tolerogenic dendritic cells. The major galectin-1 counter-receptor on both dendritic cell populations is the cell surface mucin CD43; differential core 2 O-glycosylation of CD43 between immunogenic dendritic cells and tolerogenic dendritic cells appears to contribute to the differential effect of galectin-1 on migration. Binding of galectin-1 to immunogenic dendritic cells reduces phosphorylation and activity of the protein-tyrosine kinase Pyk2, an effect that may also contribute to reduced migration of this subset. In a murine lymphedema model, galectin-1−/− animals had increased numbers of migratory dendritic cells in draining lymph nodes, specifically dendritic cells with an immunogenic phenotype. These findings define a novel role for galectin-1 in inhibiting tissue emigration of immunogenic, but not tolerogenic, dendritic cells, providing an additional mechanism by which galectin-1 can dampen immune responses.
PMCID: PMC4566239  PMID: 26216879
dendritic cell; endothelial cell; extracellular matrix; galectin; inflammation; migration
6.  CD45 mediated fodrin cleavage during galectin-1 mediated T cell death promotes phagocytic clearance of dying cells 
Disassembly and phagocytic removal of dying cells is critical to maintain immune homeostasis. The factors regulating fragmentation and uptake of dying lymphocytes are not well understood. Degradation of fodrin, a cytoskeletal linker molecule that attaches CD45 to the actin cytoskeleton, has been described in apoptotic cells, although no specific initiator of fodrin degradation has been identified. CD45 is a glycoprotein receptor for galectin-1, an endogenous lectin that can trigger lymphocyte apoptosis. CD45 is not required for membrane changes or DNA degradation during galectin-1 death. However, here we show that fodrin degradation occurs during galectin-1 T cell death, and CD45 is essential for fodrin degradation to occur. In the absence of CD45 and fodrin degradation, cell death is not accompanied by membrane blebbing, indicating that fodrin degradation occurs via a distinct pathway compared to the pathway that initiates apoptotic membrane changes and DNA degradation. Moreover, there is slower phagocytic uptake of cells in which fodrin degradation is blocked relative to cells in which CD45-mediated fodrin degradation occurs. These studies identify a novel role for CD45 in regulating cellular disassembly and promoting phagocytic clearance during galectin-1 induced T cell death.
PMCID: PMC3541008  PMID: 19454697
7.  Galectin-1 on cervical epithelial cells is a receptor for the sexually transmitted human parasite Trichomonas vaginalis 
Cellular microbiology  2008;10(10):2078-2090.
The extracellular protozoan parasite Trichomonas vaginalis causes the most prevalent non-viral sexually transmitted human infection, yet the pathogenesis of infection is poorly understood, and host cell receptors have not been described. The surface of T. vaginalis is covered with a glycoconjugate called lipophosphoglycan (LPG), which plays a role in the adherence and cytotoxicity of parasites to human cells. T. vaginalis LPG contains high amounts of galactose, making this polysaccharide a candidate for recognition by the galactose-binding galectin family of lectins. Here we show that galectin-1 (gal-1) is expressed by human cervical epithelial cells and binds T. vaginalis LPG. Gal-1 binds to parasites in a carbohydrate-dependent manner that is inhibited in the presence of T. vaginalis LPG. Addition of purified gal-1 to cervical epithelial cells also enhances parasite binding, while a decrease in gal-1 expression by small interfering RNA (siRNA) transfection decreases parasite binding. In contrast, the related galectin-7 (gal-7) does not bind T. vaginalis in a carbohydrate-dependent manner, and is unable to mediate attachment of parasites to host cells. Our data are consistent with the presence of multiple host cell receptors for T. vaginalis of which gal-1 is the first to be identified and highlight the importance of glycoconjugates in host–pathogen interactions.
PMCID: PMC4437540  PMID: 18637021
8.  Multivalent Interactions Between Lectins and Supramolecular Complexes: Galectin-1 and Self-Assembled Pseudopolyrotaxanes 
Chemistry & biology  2007;14(10):1140-1151.
Supramolecular chemistry has been employed to develop flexible and adaptable multivalent neoglycoconjugates for binding galectin-1 (Gal-1). Gal-1, a dimeric lectin with two galactoside-binding sites, regulates cancer progression and immune responses. Self-assembled pseudopolyrotaxanes comprised of lactoside-displaying cyclodextrin (LCD) “beads” threaded onto polyviologen “strings,” display mobile ligands as a result of cyclodextrin rotation about, and limited translation along, the polymer chain. The pseudopolyrotaxanes rapidly and efficiently precipitate Gal-1 and provide valency-corrected enhancements of up to 30-fold over native lactose and 20-fold over free LCD in a T-cell agglutination assay. A supramolecular stastical effect was observed, wherein the efficacy of Gal-1 inhibition correlates with the number of ligands connected to each other solely through mechanical and noncovalent interactions. Such flexible and adaptable self-assembled pseudopolyrotaxanes show promise for the study of multivalent interactions and targeting of therapeutically relevant lectins.
PMCID: PMC2072908  PMID: 17961826
9.  T cells modulate glycans on CD43 and CD45 during development and activation, signal regulation, and survival 
Glycosylation affects many essential T cell processes and is intrinsically controlled throughout the lifetime of a T cell. CD43 and CD45 are the two most abundant glycoproteins on the T cell surface and are decorated with O- and N-glycans. Global T cell glycosylation and specific glycosylation of CD43 and CD45 are modulated during thymocyte development and T cell activation; T cells control the type and abundance of glycans decorating CD43 and CD45 by regulating expression of glycosyltransferases and glycosidases. Additionally, T cells regulate glycosylation of CD45 by expressing alternatively spliced isoforms of CD45 that have different glycan attachment sites. The glycophenotype of CD43 and CD45 on T cells influences how T cells interact with the extracellular environment, including how T cells interact with endogenous lectins. This review focuses on changes in glycosylation of CD43 and CD45 occurring throughout T cell development and activation and the role that glycosylation plays in regulating T cell processes, such as migration, T cell receptor signaling, and apoptosis.
PMCID: PMC4190024  PMID: 22288421
glycosylation; T cell; CD43; CD45
10.  The potential of sarcospan in adhesion complex replacement therapeutics for the treatment of muscular dystrophy 
The FEBS journal  2013;280(17):10.1111/febs.12295.
Three adhesion complexes span the sarcolemma and facilitate critical connections between the extracellular matrix and the actin cytoskeleton: the dystrophin- and utrophin-glycoprotein complexes and α7β1 integrin. Loss of individual protein components results in a loss of the entire protein complex and muscular dystrophy. Muscular dystrophy is a progressive, lethal wasting disease characterized by repetitive cycles of myofiber degeneration and regeneration. Protein replacement therapy offers a promising approach for the treatment of muscular dystrophy. Recently, we demonstrated that sarcospan facilitates protein-protein interactions amongst the adhesion complexes and is an important therapeutic target. Here, we review current protein replacement strategies, discuss the potential benefits of sarcospan expression, and identify important experiments that must be addressed for sarcospan to move to the clinic.
PMCID: PMC3855357  PMID: 23601082
Duchenne; dystrophin; muscle; integrin; laminin-binding; mdx; muscular dystrophy; sarcolemma; sarcospan; utrophin
11.  Galectin-1, an Endogenous Lectin Produced by Thymic Epithelial Cells, Induces Apoptosis of Human Thymocytes 
The Journal of Experimental Medicine  1997;185(10):1851-1858.
Galectin-1, a β-galactoside binding protein, is produced by thymic epithelial cells and binds to human thymocytes. We have previously reported that galectin-1 induces the apoptosis of activated T lymphocytes. Because the majority of thymocytes die via apoptosis while still within the thymus, we tested whether galectin-1 could induce the apoptosis of these cells. We now report that in vitro exposure to galectin-1 induced apoptosis of two subsets of CD4lo CD8lo thymocytes. The phenotypes of susceptible thymocytes were consistent with that of both negatively selected and nonselected cells. Galectin-1–induced apoptosis was enhanced by preexposure of thymocytes to antibody to CD3, suggesting that galectin-1 may be a participant in T-cell– receptor mediated apoptosis. In contrast, pretreatment of thymocytes with dexamethasone had no effect on galectin-1 susceptibility. We noted that 71% of the cells undergoing apoptosis after galectin-1 treatment had a DNA content greater than 2N, indicating that proliferating thymocytes were most sensitive to galectin-1. We propose that galectin-1 plays a role in the apoptosis of both negatively selected and nonselected thymocytes, and that the susceptibility of thymocytes to galectin-1 is regulated, in part, by entry or exit from the cell cycle.
PMCID: PMC2196320  PMID: 9151710
12.  Structural aspects of binding of α-linked digalactosides to human galectin-1 
Glycobiology  2011;21(12):1627-1641.
By definition, adhesion/growth-regulatory galectins are known for their ability to bind β-galactosides such as Galβ(1 → 4)Glc (lactose). Indications for affinity of human galectin-1 to α-linked digalactosides pose questions on the interaction profile with such bound ligands and selection of the galactose moiety for CH–π stacking. These issues are resolved by a combination of 15N–1H heteronuclear single quantum coherence (HSQC) chemical shift and saturation transfer difference nuclear magnetic resonance (STD NMR) epitope mappings with docking analysis, using the α(1 → 3/4)-linked digalactosides and also Galα(1 → 6)Glc (melibiose) as test compounds. The experimental part revealed interaction with the canonical lectin site, and this preferentially via the non-reducing-end galactose moiety. Low-energy conformers appear to be selected without notable distortion, as shown by molecular dynamics simulations. With the α(1 → 4) disaccharide, however, the typical CH–π interaction is significantly diminished, yet binding appears to be partially compensated for by hydrogen bonding. Overall, these findings reveal that the type of α-linkage in digalactosides has an impact on maintaining CH–π interactions and the pattern of hydrogen bonding, explaining preference for the α(1 → 3) linkage. Thus, this lectin is able to accommodate both α- and β-linked galactosides at the same site, with major contacts to the non-reducing-end sugar unit.
PMCID: PMC3219418  PMID: 21712397
agglutinin; glycolipid; glycoprotein; lectin; sugar code
13.  High Throughput Screening for Compounds That Alter Muscle Cell Glycosylation Identifies New Role for N-Glycans in Regulating Sarcolemmal Protein Abundance and Laminin Binding* 
The Journal of Biological Chemistry  2012;287(27):22759-22770.
Background: Genetic alteration of muscle cell glycosylation in muscular dystrophy models has ameliorated disease.
Results: A high throughput screen identified a small molecule, lobeline, which altered muscle cell glycosylation and improved laminin binding.
Conclusion: Lobeline increased abundance of sarcolemmal glycoproteins and increased laminin binding in an N-glycan-dependent manner.
Significance: A novel approach revealed an unexpected role for N-glycans in muscle cell function.
Duchenne muscular dystrophy is an X-linked disorder characterized by loss of dystrophin, a cytoskeletal protein that connects the actin cytoskeleton in skeletal muscle cells to extracellular matrix. Dystrophin binds to the cytoplasmic domain of the transmembrane glycoprotein β-dystroglycan (β-DG), which associates with cell surface α-dystroglycan (α-DG) that binds laminin in the extracellular matrix. β-DG can also associate with utrophin, and this differential association correlates with specific glycosylation changes on α-DG. Genetic modification of α-DG glycosylation can promote utrophin binding and rescue dystrophic phenotypes in mouse dystrophy models. We used high throughput screening with the plant lectin Wisteria floribunda agglutinin (WFA) to identify compounds that altered muscle cell surface glycosylation, with the goal of finding compounds that increase abundance of α-DG and associated sarcolemmal glycoproteins, increase utrophin usage, and increase laminin binding. We identified one compound, lobeline, from the Prestwick library of Food and Drug Administration-approved compounds that fulfilled these criteria, increasing WFA binding to C2C12 cells and to primary muscle cells from wild type and mdx mice. WFA binding and enhancement by lobeline required complex N-glycans but not O-mannose glycans that bind laminin. However, inhibiting complex N-glycan processing reduced laminin binding to muscle cell glycoproteins, although O-mannosylation was intact. Glycan analysis demonstrated a general increase in N-glycans on lobeline-treated cells rather than specific alterations in cell surface glycosylation, consistent with increased abundance of multiple sarcolemmal glycoproteins. This demonstrates the feasibility of high throughput screening with plant lectins to identify compounds that alter muscle cell glycosylation and identifies a novel role for N-glycans in regulating muscle cell function.
PMCID: PMC3391114  PMID: 22570487
Glycobiology; Glycosylation Inhibitors; Laminin; Lectin; Muscular Dystrophy; Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy; N-Glycan; Dystroglycan; Lobeline; Muscle
15.  Galectin multimerization and lattice formation are regulated by linker region structure 
Glycobiology  2010;21(1):6-12.
Galectins regulate cellular functions by binding to glycan ligands on cell surface glycoprotein receptors. Prototype galectins, such as galectin-1, are one carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD) monomers that noncovalently dimerize, whereas tandem-repeat galectins, such as galectin-9, have two non-identical CRDs connected by a linker domain. Dimerization of prototype galectins, or both CRDs in tandem-repeat galectins, is typically required for the crosslinking of glycoprotein receptors and subsequent cellular signaling. Several studies have found that tandem-repeat galectins are more potent than prototype galectins in triggering many cell responses, including cell death. These differences could be due to CRD specificity, the presence or absence of a linker domain between CRDs, or both. To interrogate the basis for the increased potency of tandem-repeat galectins compared with prototype galectins in triggering cell death, we created three tandem-repeat galectin constructs with different linker regions joining identical galectin-1 CRDs, so that any differences we observed would be due to the contribution of the linker region rather than due to CRD specificity. We found that random-coil or rigid α-helical linkers that permit separation of the two galectin-1 CRDs facilitated the formation of higher-order galectin multimers and that these galectins were more potent in binding to glycan ligands and cell surface glycoprotein receptors, as well as triggering T cell death, compared with native galectin-1 or a construct with a short rigid linker. Thus, the increased potency of tandem-repeat galectins compared with prototype galectins is likely due to the ability of the linker domain to permit intermolecular CRD interactions, resulting in the formation of higher-order multimers with increased valency, rather than differences in CRD specificity.
PMCID: PMC2998985  PMID: 20864568
apoptosis; galectin; glycan microarray; lattice; tandem repeat
16.  The Road Less Traveled: Regulation of Leukocyte Migration Across Vascular and Lymphatic Endothelium by Galectins 
Leukocyte entry from the blood into inflamed tissues, exit into the lymphatics, and migration to regional lymph nodes are all crucial processes for mounting an effective adaptive immune response. Leukocytes must cross two endothelial cell layers, the vascular and the lymphatic endothelial cell layers, during the journey from the blood to the lymph node. The proteins and cellular interactions which regulate leukocyte migration across the vascular endothelium are well studied; however, little is known about the factors that regulate leukocyte migration across the lymphatic endothelium. Here, we will summarize evidence for a role for galectins, a family of carbohydrate-binding proteins, in regulating leukocyte migration across the vascular endothelium and propose that galectins are also involved in leukocyte migration across the lymphatic endothelium.
PMCID: PMC3064902  PMID: 20859666
Galectin; leukocyte; migration; vascular endothelium; lymphatic endothelium
17.  Suppression Of Autoimmune Diabetes By Soluble Galectin-1 
Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is a T-cell-mediated autoimmune disease that targets the β-cells of the pancreas. We investigated the ability of soluble galectin-1 (gal-1), an endogenous lectin that promotes T-cell apoptosis, to down-regulate the T-cell response that destroys the pancreatic β-cells. We demonstrated that in NOD mice, gal-1-therapy reduces significantly the amount of Th1 cells and augments the number of T-cells secreting IL-4 or IL-10 specific for islet cell-Ag, and causes peripheral deletion of β-cell-reactive T-cells. Administration of gal-1 prevented onset of hyperglycemia in NOD mice at early and sub-clinical stages of T1D. Preventive gal-1-therapy shifted the composition of the insulitis into an infiltrate that did not invade the islets, and that contained a significantly reduced number of Th1 cells and a higher percentage of CD4+ T-cells with content of IL-4, IL-5 or IL-10. The beneficial effects of gal-1 correlated with the ability of the lectin to trigger apoptosis of the T-cell subsets that cause β-cell damage, while sparing naïve T-cells, Th2 lymphocytes and regulatory T-cells in NOD mice. Importantly, gal-1 reversed β-cell autoimmunity in NOD mice with ongoing T1D, with reversal of hyperglycemia. Since gal-1-therapy did not cause major side effects or β-cell toxicity in NOD mice, the use of gal-1 to control β-cell autoimmunity represents a novel alternative for treatment of sub-clinical or ongoing T1D.
PMCID: PMC2929001  PMID: 19234158
Diabetes; Autoimmunity; Th1/Th2 cells
18.  Endothelial Galectin-1 Binds to Specific Glycans on Nipah Virus Fusion Protein and Inhibits Maturation, Mobility, and Function to Block Syncytia Formation 
PLoS Pathogens  2010;6(7):e1000993.
Nipah virus targets human endothelial cells via NiV-F and NiV-G envelope glycoproteins, resulting in endothelial syncytia formation and vascular compromise. Endothelial cells respond to viral infection by releasing innate immune effectors, including galectins, which are secreted proteins that bind to specific glycan ligands on cell surface glycoproteins. We demonstrate that galectin-1 reduces NiV-F mediated fusion of endothelial cells, and that endogenous galectin-1 in endothelial cells is sufficient to inhibit syncytia formation. Galectin-1 regulates NiV-F mediated cell fusion at three distinct points, including retarding maturation of nascent NiV-F, reducing NiV-F lateral mobility on the plasma membrane, and directly inhibiting the conformational change in NiV-F required for triggering fusion. Characterization of the NiV-F N-glycome showed that the critical site for galectin-1 inhibition is rich in glycan structures known to bind galectin-1. These studies identify a unique set of mechanisms for regulating pathophysiology of NiV infection at the level of the target cell.
Author Summary
Nipah virus (NiV) is classified as a “priority pathogen” by the NIH. NiV infection of humans results in multi-organ hemorrhage due to endothelial syncytia formation, and also causes fatal encephalitis in up to 70% of patients. As there are no effective vaccines or therapeutics for NiV, understanding the mechanism of endothelial damage by NiV is a critical goal. Our present work defines the interaction between galectin-1, an innate immune lectin that is secreted by human endothelial cells, with the fusion glycoprotein of NiV. We demonstrate that galectin-1 can block the function of the NiV-F protein via three distinct mechanisms, and thus reduce the ability of NiV-F to cause endothelial cell-cell fusion. Importantly, in this study, we use human endothelial cells, the primary target of Nipah virus in vivo, and demonstrate that endogenous galectin-1 made by endothelial cells contributes to limiting cell-cell fusion caused by NiV-F. As endothelial syncytia formation is one of the primary pathophysiologic events in Nipah virus infection, contributing to the hemorrhagic diathesis seen in infected patients, understanding the mechanism of endothelial cell fusion and the ability of galectin-1 to ameliorate cell fusion are critical for development of new approaches to mitigate these events.
PMCID: PMC2904771  PMID: 20657665
19.  Galectin–glycan lattices regulate cell-surface glycoprotein organization and signalling 
Biochemical Society transactions  2008;36(Pt 6):1472-1477.
The formation of multivalent complexes of soluble galectins with glycoprotein receptors on the plasma membrane helps to organize glycoprotein assemblies on the surface of the cell. In some cell types, this formation of galectin–glycan lattices or scaffolds is critical for organizing plasma membrane domains, such as lipid rafts, or for targeted delivery of glycoproteins to the apical or basolateral surface. Galectin–glycan lattice formation is also involved in regulating the signalling threshold of some cell-surface glycoproteins, including T-cell receptors and growth factor receptors. Finally, galectin–glycan lattices can determine receptor residency time by inhibiting endocytosis of glycoprotein receptors from the cell surface, thus modulating the magnitude or duration of signalling from the cell surface. This paper reviews recent evidence in vitro and in vivo for critical physiological and cellular functions that are regulated by galectin–glycoprotein interactions.
PMCID: PMC2811491  PMID: 19021578
apoptosis; endocytosis; galectin; glycoprotein; lattice; lipid raft
20.  Galectin-1 induces nuclear translocation of Endonuclease G in caspase- and cytochrome c-independent T cell death1 
Cell death and differentiation  2004;11(12):1277-1286.
Galectin-1, a mammalian lectin expressed in many tissues, induces death of diverse cell types, including lymphocytes and tumor cells. The galectin-1 T cell death pathway is novel and distinct from other death pathways, including those initiated by Fas and corticosteroids. We have found that galectin-1 binding to human T cell lines triggered rapid translocation of endonuclease G from mitochondria to nuclei. However, endonuclease G nuclear translocation occurred without cytochrome c release from mitochondria, without nuclear translocation of apoptosis inducing factor, and prior to loss of mitochondrial membrane potential. Galectin-1 treatment did not result in caspase activation, nor was death blocked by caspase inhibitors. However, galectin-1 cell death was inhibited by intracellular expression of galectin-3, and galectin-3 expression inhibited the eventual loss of mitochondrial membrane potential. Galectin-1 induced cell death proceeds via a caspase-independent pathway that involves a unique pattern of mitochondrial events, and different galectin family members can coordinately regulate susceptibility to cell death.
PMCID: PMC1201488  PMID: 15297883
galectin; apoptosis; T lymphocyte; Endonuclease G; human; phosphatidylserine (PS); z-Val-Ala-Asp(OMe)-CH2F (zVAD-fmk); z-Asp-Glu-Val-Asp(OMe)-CH2F (zDEVD-fmk); poly(ADP-ribose)polymerase (PARP); 7-amino-actinomycin D (7AAD); z-Asp-Glu-Val-Asp-7-amino-4-trifluoromethylcoumarin (zDEVD-AFC); mitochondrial membrane potential (Δψm); endonuclease G (EndoG); 10-N-nonyl acridine orange (NAO); Apoptosis inducing factor (AIF); truncated Bid (tBid); propidium iodide (PI); fluorescein isothiocyanate (FITC)
21.  N-Glycans on Nipah Virus Fusion Protein Protect against Neutralization but Reduce Membrane Fusion and Viral Entry 
Journal of Virology  2006;80(10):4878-4889.
Nipah virus (NiV) is a deadly emerging paramyxovirus. The NiV attachment (NiV-G) and fusion (NiV-F) envelope glycoproteins mediate both syncytium formation and viral entry. Specific N-glycans on paramyxovirus fusion proteins are generally required for proper conformational integrity and biological function. However, removal of individual N-glycans on NiV-F had little negative effect on processing or fusogenicity and has even resulted in slightly increased fusogenicity. Here, we report that in both syncytium formation and viral entry assays, removal of multiple N-glycans on NiV-F resulted in marked increases in fusogenicity (>5-fold) but also resulted in increased sensitivity to neutralization by NiV-F-specific antisera. The mechanism underlying the hyperfusogenicity of these NiV-F N-glycan mutants is likely due to more-robust six-helix bundle formation, as these mutants showed increased fusion kinetics and were more resistant to neutralization by a fusion-inhibitory reagent based on the C-terminal heptad repeat region of NiV-F. Finally, we demonstrate that the fusogenicities of the NiV-F N-glycan mutants were inversely correlated with the relative avidities of NiV-F's interactions with NiV-G, providing support for the attachment protein “displacement” model of paramyxovirus fusion. Our results indicate that N-glycans on NiV-F protect NiV from antibody neutralization, suggest that this “shielding” role comes together with limiting cell-cell fusion and viral entry efficiencies, and point to the mechanisms underlying the hyperfusogenicity of these N-glycan mutants. These features underscore the varied roles that N-glycans on NiV-F play in the pathobiology of NiV entry but also shed light on the general mechanisms of paramyxovirus fusion with host cells.
PMCID: PMC1472062  PMID: 16641279
22.  Differentiating between Memory and Effector Cd8 T Cells by Altered Expression of Cell Surface O-Glycans 
The Journal of Experimental Medicine  2000;191(7):1241-1246.
Currently there are few reliable cell surface markers that can clearly discriminate effector from memory T cells. To determine if there are changes in O-glycosylation between these two cell types, we analyzed virus-specific CD8 T cells at various time points after lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus infection of mice. Antigen-specific CD8 T cells were identified using major histocompatibility complex class I tetramers, and glycosylation changes were monitored with a monoclonal antibody (1B11) that recognizes O-glycans on mucin-type glycoproteins. We observed a striking upregulation of a specific cell surface O-glycan epitope on virus-specific CD8 T cells during the effector phase of the primary cytotoxic T lymphocyte (CTL) response. This upregulation showed a strong correlation with the acquisition of effector function and was downregulated on memory CD8 T cells. Upon reinfection, there was again increased expression of this specific O-glycan epitope on secondary CTL effectors, followed once more by decreased expression on memory cells. Thus, this study identifies a new cell surface marker to distinguish between effector and memory CD8 T cells. This marker can be used to isolate pure populations of effector CTLs and also to determine the proportion of memory CD8 T cells that are recruited into the secondary response upon reencounter with antigen. This latter information will be of value in optimizing immunization strategies for boosting CD8 T cell responses.
PMCID: PMC2193165  PMID: 10748241
memory T cells; effector T cells; cytotoxic T lymphocytes; viral immunity; O-glycosylation
23.  Molecular Basis for the Generation in Pigs of Influenza A Viruses with Pandemic Potential 
Journal of Virology  1998;72(9):7367-7373.
Genetic and biologic observations suggest that pigs may serve as “mixing vessels” for the generation of human-avian influenza A virus reassortants, similar to those responsible for the 1957 and 1968 pandemics. Here we demonstrate a structural basis for this hypothesis. Cell surface receptors for both human and avian influenza viruses were identified in the pig trachea, providing a milieu conducive to viral replication and genetic reassortment. Surprisingly, with continued replication, some avian-like swine viruses acquired the ability to recognize human virus receptors, raising the possibility of their direct transmission to human populations. These findings help to explain the emergence of pandemic influenza viruses and support the need for continued surveillance of swine for viruses carrying avian virus genes.
PMCID: PMC109961  PMID: 9696833

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