Expression of Helix pomatia Lectin Binding Glycoproteins in Women with Breast Cancer in Relationship to Their Mood Group Phenotypes

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Aberrant glycosylation occurs in essentially all types of human cancers. A difference in glycopattern of proteins will result in a change of function of the proteins. The lectin from Helix pomatia (HPA) recognizes N-acetylgalactosaminylated glycoproteins and very consistent results over the increased binding of HPA in tissue sections are associated with metastasis progression and poor patient prognosis in a range of human adenocarcinomas. The induced modification of protein function after changed glycosylation is unknown, and as a part in characterizing the glycoproteins carrying the specific carbohydrates, we analyzed the major HPA binding proteins in sera from healthy women, women with primary breast cancer with no metastasis (bcmet-), and women with metastasizing breast cancer (bcmet+) using lectin affinity chromatography and lectin blotting. The binding ligands were further identified using mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS) to confirm the captured glycoproteins. The major HPA binding proteins in serum were found to be IgA1, complement factor C3, von Willebrand factor (vWF), alpha-2-macroglobulin and IgM. This set of antigens is a panel of candidates for useful HPA related biomarkers in sera, but our results also emphasize the fact that the blood group phenotypes are of most importance when using the lectin HPA in recognition of cancer biomarkers in sera and plasma. The results emphasize that interpretation of an individual change in the glycosylation pattern of a specific tumor marker always needs to be analyzed in its right context. This study shows that the blood group phenotypes can have a major impact on the results when analyzing HPA lectin binding.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)782-786
JournalJournal of Proteome Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Cancer and Oncology


  • blood
  • group
  • serum
  • breast cancer
  • GaINAc glycoproteins
  • Helix pomatia lectin
  • HPA


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