Expression of galectins (carbohydrate-bindingproteins) in normal and ulcerative colitis (UC) colonic epithelium: P024

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Aim:Galectins are small, carbohydrate-bindingproteins that have been ascribed immuno-modulating functions. Expression of Galectins haveprevious been studied in inflammatory bowel disease animal models and, to some extent, in humans. In this study we examine the correlation between the inflammatory grade and expression of Galectins in UC.Methods:Intestinal specimens from 18 consecutive operated UC patients were transported fresh to the laboratory and tissue for histopathology wasprocessed. Control tissue was from colon cancer patients. Immunohistochemistry using anti-Galectin-1 to -4 antibodies was performed. The inflammatory grade was classified as mild (cryptitis), moderate (ulceration) and severe (abscess). Galectin expression was evaluated in several sections and graded using a semi quantitative scale.Results:Gal-1 was not expressed in colon epithelium. Correlated to the inflammatory grade; Galectin-2 showed a tendency of diminished expression while Galectin-3 showed both a decreased and increased staining. Colonic epithelium Galectin-4 expression was restricted to the immediate supranuclear area in contrast to Galectin-2 and -3 that were expressed in the entire cytoplasm.Conclusion:In contrast toprevious reported, Galectin expression in this patient series showed no clear correlation with inflammatory grade in UC. Galectin-4 supranuclear localization has not been reported earlier.

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