Loss of galectin-3 decreases the number of immune cells in the subventricular zone and restores proliferation in a viral model of multiple sclerosis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


  • Rachel E James
  • James Hillis
  • István Adorján
  • Betty Gration
  • Mayara V Mundim
  • Moon-Moon Majumdar
  • Richard L Yates
  • Maureen M H Richards
  • Gwendolyn E Goings
  • Gabriele C DeLuca
  • David R Greaves
  • Stephen D Miller
  • Francis G Szele

Colleges, School and Institutes

External organisations

  • Department of Physiology, Anatomy, and Genetics, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX1 3HS, United Kingdom.
  • Dunn School of Pathology, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX1 3HS, United Kingdom.
  • Nuffield Department of Clinical Neuroscience, University of Oxford, Oxford, OX1 3HS, United Kingdom.
  • Department of Microbiology-Immunology, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University, Chicago, Illinois.


Multiple sclerosis (MS) frequently starts near the lateral ventricles, which are lined by subventricular zone (SVZ) progenitor cells that can migrate to lesions and contribute to repair. Because MS-induced inflammation may decrease SVZ proliferation and thus limit repair, we studied the role of galectin-3 (Gal-3), a proinflammatory protein. Gal-3 expression was increased in periventricular regions of human MS in post-mortem brain samples and was also upregulated in periventricular regions in a murine MS model, Theiler's murine encephalomyelitis virus (TMEV) infection. Whereas TMEV increased SVZ chemokine (CCL2, CCL5, CCL, and CXCL10) expression in wild type (WT) mice, this was inhibited in Gal-3(-/-) mice. Though numerous CD45+ immune cells entered the SVZ of WT mice after TMEV infection, their numbers were significantly diminished in Gal-3(-/-) mice. TMEV also reduced neuroblast and proliferative SVZ cell numbers in WT mice but this was restored in Gal-3(-/-) mice and was correlated with increased numbers of doublecortin+ neuroblasts in the corpus callosum. In summary, our data showed that loss of Gal-3 blocked chemokine increases after TMEV, reduced immune cell migration into the SVZ, reestablished SVZ proliferation and increased the number of progenitors in the corpus callosum. These results suggest Gal-3 plays a central role in modulating the SVZ neurogenic niche's response to this model of MS.


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)105-21
Number of pages17
Issue number1
Early online date4 Sep 2015
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2016


  • Adolescent, Adult, Aged, Animals, Brain, Cell Movement, Child, Female, Galectin 3, Humans, Male, Mice, Inbred C57BL, Mice, Knockout, Middle Aged, Multiple Sclerosis, Nervous System Autoimmune Disease, Experimental, Neural Stem Cells, Neurogenesis, Poliomyelitis, Stem Cell Niche, Theilovirus, Young Adult, Journal Article, Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't