CancerLectinDB: a database of lectins relevant to cancer

Glycoconj J. 2008 Apr;25(3):191-8. doi: 10.1007/s10719-007-9085-5. Epub 2007 Nov 24.


The role of lectins in mediating cancer metastasis, apoptosis as well as various other signaling events has been well established in the past few years. Data on various aspects of the role of lectins in cancer is being accumulated at a rapid pace. The data on lectins available in the literature is so diverse, that it becomes difficult and time-consuming, if not impossible to comprehend the advances in various areas and obtain the maximum benefit. Not only do the lectins vary significantly in their individual functional roles, but they are also diverse in their sequences, structures, binding site architectures, quaternary structures, carbohydrate affinities and specificities as well as their potential applications. An organization of these seemingly independent data into a common framework is essential in order to achieve effective use of all the data towards understanding the roles of different lectins in different aspects of cancer and any resulting applications. An integrated knowledge base (CancerLectinDB) together with appropriate analytical tools has therefore been developed for lectins relevant for any aspect of cancer, by collating and integrating diverse data. This database is unique in terms of providing sequence, structural, and functional annotations for lectins from all known sources in cancer and is expected to be a useful addition to the number of glycan related resources now available to the community. The database has been implemented using MySQL on a Linux platform and web-enabled using Perl-CGI and Java tools. Data for individual lectins pertain to taxonomic, biochemical, domain architecture, molecular sequence and structural details as well as carbohydrate specificities. Extensive links have also been provided for relevant bioinformatics resources and analytical tools. Availability of diverse data integrated into a common framework is expected to be of high value for various studies on lectin cancer biology. CancerLectinDB can be accessed through .

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amino Acid Sequence
  • Animals
  • Conserved Sequence
  • Databases, Protein*
  • Humans
  • Lectins / chemistry
  • Lectins / metabolism*
  • Molecular Sequence Data
  • Neoplasms / metabolism*
  • Sequence Alignment


  • Lectins