Insect C-type lectins in innate immunity

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Abstract

C-type lectins (CTLs) are a family of proteins that contain characteristic modules of carbohydrate-recognition domains (CRDs) and they possess the binding activity to ligands in a calcium-dependent manner. CTLs play important roles in animal immune responses, and in insects, they are involved in opsonization, nodule formation, agglutination, encapsulation, melanization, and prophenoloxidase activation, as well as in maintaining gut microbiome homeostasis. In this review, we will summarize insect CTLs, compare the properties of insect CTLs with vertebrate CTLs, and focus mainly on the domain organization and functions of insect CTLs in innate immunity.

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