Evidence of a role for galectin-1 in acute inflammation

Eur J Immunol. 2000 May;30(5):1331-9. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1521-4141(200005)30:5<1331::AID-IMMU1331>3.0.CO;2-H.


Galectin-1 (Gal-1), a member of a family of beta-galactoside-binding proteins, has been suggested to play key roles in immunological and inflammatory processes. The present study deals with the concept of an in vivo role for Gal-1 in acute inflammation by using the rat hind paw edema test. Local administration of Gal-1 (0.5, 2, 4 and 8 microg/ml) inhibited acute inflammation induced by bee venom phospholipase A(2) (PLA(2)) when it was injected 30 min before the enzyme or co-injected together with PLA(2). The anti-inflammatory effect was prevented by a specific antibody, but independent of its carbohydrate-binding properties. In contrast, Gal-1 failed to inhibit histamine-induced edema. Histopathological studies showed a clear reduction of the inflammatory process when Gal-1 was injected before PLA(2), evidenced by a diminished number of infiltrated polymorphonuclear neutrophils and scarce degranulated mast cells. The anti-inflammatory effect was also assessed in vitro, showing that Gal-1 treatment reduced prostaglandin E(2) secretion and arachidonic acid release from stimulated peritoneal macrophages. Results presented here provide the first evidence for a role of Gal-1 in acute inflammation and suggest that the anti-inflammatory effect involves the inhibition of both soluble and cellular mediators of the inflammatory response.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Dinoprostone / immunology
  • Female
  • Galectin 1
  • Hemagglutinins / administration & dosage
  • Hemagglutinins / immunology*
  • Inflammation / immunology*
  • Inflammation / pathology
  • Phospholipases A / administration & dosage
  • Phospholipases A / immunology*
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar


  • Galectin 1
  • Hemagglutinins
  • Phospholipases A
  • Dinoprostone