Galectin-3 is a member of the β-galactoside-binding animal lectin family expressed in various cell types, including mast cells. To determine the role of galectin-3 in the function of mast cells, we studied bone marrow-derived mast cells (BMMC) from wild-type (gal3+/+) and galectin-3-deficient (gal3-/-) mice. Cells from the two genotypes showed comparable expression of IgE receptor and c-Kit. However, upon activation by FcεRI cross-linkage, gal3-/- BMMC secreted a significantly lower amount of histamine as well as the cytokine IL-4, compared with gal3+/+ BMMC. In addition, we found significantly reduced passive cutaneous anaphylaxis reactions in gal3-/- mice compared with gal3+/+ mice. These results indicate that there is a defect in the response of mast cells in gal3-/- mice. Unexpectedly, we found that gal3-/- BMMC contained a dramatically lower basal level of JNK1 protein compared with gal3+/+ BMMC, which is probably responsible for the lower EL-4 production. The decreased JNK1 level in gal3-/- BMMC is accompanied by a lower JNK1 mRNA level, suggesting that galectin-3 regulates the transcription of the JNK gene or processing of its RNA. All together, these results point to an important role of galectin-3 in mast cell biology.
|Original language||English (US)|
|Number of pages||7|
|Journal||Journal of Immunology|
|State||Published - Oct 15 2006|
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