Synergistic effects of PectaSol-C modified citrus pectin an inhibitor of Galectin-3 and paclitaxel on apoptosis of human SKOV-3 ovarian cancer cells

Asian Pac J Cancer Prev. 2013;14(12):7561-8. doi: 10.7314/apjcp.2013.14.12.7561.


Galectin-3 (Gal-3) is a carbohydrate-binding protein which is thought to be involved in cancer progression but its contribution to epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) remains unclear. The present study sought to determine the role of Gal-3 in chemoresistance of the human SKOV-3 ovarian cancer cell line to paclitaxel (PTX) using recombinant human Gal-3 (rhGal-3) and PectaSol-C modified citrus pectin (Pect-MCP) as a specific Gal-3 competitive inhibitor. Our results showed 41% increased cell proliferation, 36% decreased caspase-3 activity and 33.6% increased substrate-dependent adhesion in the presence of rhGal-3 compared to the control case (p<0.001). Treatment of cells with a non-effective dose of PTX (100nM) and 0.1% Pect-MCP in combination revealed synergistic cytotoxic effects with 75% reduced cell viability and subsequent 3.9-fold increase in caspase-3 activity. Moreover, there was 39% decrease in substrate-dependent adhesion compared to control (p<0.001). These results suggest that inhibition of Gal-3 could be a useful therapeutic tool for combination therapy of ovarian cancer.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic / pharmacology
  • Apoptosis / drug effects*
  • Blood Proteins
  • Blotting, Western
  • Cell Adhesion / drug effects
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Citrus / chemistry*
  • Drug Synergism
  • Female
  • Galectin 3 / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Galectins
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology*
  • Paclitaxel / pharmacology*
  • Pectins / pharmacology*
  • RNA, Messenger / genetics
  • Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Tumor Cells, Cultured
  • Umbilical Cord


  • Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic
  • Blood Proteins
  • Galectin 3
  • Galectins
  • LGALS3 protein, human
  • RNA, Messenger
  • Pectins
  • Paclitaxel