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Wu, Gusheng; Lu, Zi-Hua; André, Sabine; Gabius, Hans-Joachim and Ledeen, Robert W. (2016): Functional interplay between ganglioside GM1 and cross-linking galectin-1 induces axon-like neuritogenesis via integrin-based signaling and TRPC5-dependent Ca2+ influx. In: Journal of Neurochemistry, Vol. 136, No. 3: pp. 550-563

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Axon-like neuritogenesis in neuroblastoma (NG108-15) cells and primary cerebellar granular neurons is furthered by the presence of ganglioside GM1. We describe here that galectin-1 (Gal-1), a homobivalent endogenous lectin, is an effector by cross-linking the ganglioside and its associated glycoprotein alpha(5)beta(1)-integrin. The thereby triggered signaling cascade involves autophosphorylation of focal adhesion kinase and activation of phospholipase C gamma and phosphoinositide-3 kinase. This leads to a transient increase in the intracellular Ca2+ concentration by opening of TRPC5 channels, which belong to the signal transduction-gated cation channels. Controls with GM1-defective cells (NG-CR72 and neurons from ganglio-series KO mice) were retarded in axonal growth, underscoring the relevance of GM1 as functional counterreceptor for Gal-1. The lectin's presence was detected in the NG108-15 cells, suggesting an autocrine mechanism of action, and in astrocytes in situ. Gal-1, as cross-linking lectin, can thus translate metabolic conversion of ganglioside GD1a to GM1 by neuraminidase action into axon growth.

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