Functions of cell surface galectin-glycoprotein lattices

Curr Opin Struct Biol. 2007 Oct;17(5):513-20. doi: 10.1016/ Epub 2007 Oct 22.


Programmed remodeling of cell surface glycans by the sequential action of specific glycosyltransferases can control biological processes by generating or masking ligands for endogenous lectins. Galectins, a family of animal lectins with affinity for beta-galactosides, can form multivalent complexes with cell surface glycoconjugates and deliver a variety of intracellular signals to modulate cell activation, differentiation, and survival. Recent efforts involving genetic or biochemical manipulation of O-glycosylation and N-glycosylation pathways, as well as blockade of the synthesis of endogenous galectins, have illuminated essential roles for galectin-glycoprotein lattices in the control of biological processes including receptor turnover and endocytosis, host-pathogen interactions, and immune cell activation and homeostasis.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / physiology
  • Cell Membrane / chemistry*
  • Cell Membrane / physiology
  • Galectins / chemistry*
  • Galectins / physiology
  • Host-Pathogen Interactions
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / chemistry*
  • Membrane Glycoproteins / physiology
  • Models, Molecular
  • Multiprotein Complexes
  • T-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • T-Lymphocytes / physiology


  • Galectins
  • Membrane Glycoproteins
  • Multiprotein Complexes