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Altered glycosylation patterns protect tumors from NK cells

Compared to other diseased cells, malignant often exhibit modified surface glycosylation patterns, potentially altering recognition by host immune cells.

Natural killer (NK) cells are sentinels of cancer immunosurveillanc system and express multiple receptors that allow for discrimination between healthy and .

In this issue of the , and colleagues at the University of Bern determined that ligands of the inhibitory sialic acid-binding lectins Siglec-7 and Siglec-9 are expressed on the surface of multiple tumor cell types, and that expression of these ligands protects tumor cells from responses.

Evaluation of in healthy donors revealed the presence of a Siglec-9-expressing cytotoxic NK cell population with enhanced chemotactic potential.

Interestingly, the Siglec-9-expressing NK cell population was reduced in peripheral blood from patients with colon adenocarcinoma and malignant melanoma. These data suggest that targeting Siglec-7 and Siglec-9 ligands may enhance NK cell-based cancer therapies.

TITLE: Interactions between Siglec-7/9 receptors and ligands influence NK cell-dependent tumor immunosurveillance

Source

Journal of Clinical Investigation