The trafficking of leukocytes from the blood stream to the surrounding tissue is a fundamental feature of an inflammatory response. Although many of the adhesion molecules and chemokines that direct leukocyte trafficking have been identified, there is still much to be discovered, particularly with regard to the persistence of leukocyte infiltrates in chronic inflammation. Elucidating the molecular mechanisms involved in this process is critical to understanding and treating inflammatory pathologies. Recent studies have identified members of the galectin family as immunoregulatory proteins. Included among the actions of galectins are modulatory effects, both positive and negative, on leukocyte recruitment. The focus of this review is to summarize current knowledge on the role of galectins in leukocyte trafficking during inflammation. A better understanding of the function of this family of endogenous lectins will open new avenues for innovative drug discovery.
- Cell Movement
- Inflammation Mediators
- Models, Immunological
- Journal Article
- Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't