Extracellular and intracellular small-molecule galectin-3 inhibitors

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Galectin-3 is a carbohydrate binding protein which has important roles in cancer and immunity. Potent galectin-3 inhibitors have been synthesized, for experimental purposes and potential clinical use. As galectin-3 is implicated in both intra- and extracellular activities, permeability of galectin-3 inhibitors is an important parameter determining biological effects. We compared the cellular uptake of galectin-3 inhibitors and their potency in the intracellular or extracellular space. The inhibitors differed in their polar surface area (PSA), but had similar affinities for galectin-3. Using a well-established permeability assay, we confirmed that the uptake was significantly higher for the inhibitor with the lowest PSA, as expected. To analyze intracellular activity of the inhibitors, we developed a novel assay based on galectin-3 accumulation around damaged intracellular vesicles. The results show striking differences between the inhibitors intracellular potency, correlating with their PSAs. To test extracellular activity of the inhibitors, we analyzed their potency to block binding of galectin-3 to cell surfaces. All inhibitors were equally able to block galectin-3 binding to cells and this was proportional to their affinity for galectin-3. These inhibitors may serve as useful tools in exploring biological roles of galectin-3 and may further our understanding of intracellular versus extracellular roles of galectin-3.

Details

Authors
Organisations
External organisations
  • University of Copenhagen
  • Galecto Biotech ApS, Denmark
  • Agilent Technologies Denmark ApS
  • Xintela AB
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Cell and Molecular Biology
Original languageEnglish
Article number2186
JournalScientific Reports
Volume9
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2019 Feb 18
Publication categoryResearch
Peer-reviewedYes