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Cancers 2010, 2(2), 592-610; doi:10.3390/cancers2020592

Galectins as Cancer Biomarkers

Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, 110 E. Warren Avenue, Detroit, MI 48201, USA
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Received: 2 March 2010 / Revised: 2 April 2010 / Accepted: 19 April 2010 / Published: 20 April 2010
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Biomarkers: Oncology Studies)
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Abstract

Galectins are a group of proteins that bind β-galactosides through evolutionarily conserved sequence elements of the carbohydrate recognition domain (CRD). Proteins similar to galectins can be found in very primitive animals such as sponges. Each galectin has an individual carbohydrate binding preference and can be found in cytoplasm as well as in the nucleus. They also can be secreted through non-classical pathways and function extra-cellularly. Experimental and clinical data demonstrate a correlation between galectin expression and tumor progression and metastasis, and therefore, galectins have the potential to serve as reliable tumor markers. In this review, we describe the expression and role of galectins in different cancers and their clinical applications for diagnostic use.
Keywords: galectins; biomarkers; cancer galectins; biomarkers; cancer
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Balan, V.; Nangia-Makker, P.; Raz, A. Galectins as Cancer Biomarkers. Cancers 2010, 2, 592-610.

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