Synergistic Effects of PectaSol-C Modified Citrus Pectin an Inhibitor of Galectin-3 and Paclitaxel on Apoptosis of Human SKOV-3 Ovarian Cancer Cells

  • Hossein, Ghamartaj (Department of Animal Physiology, Developmental Biology Laboratory, School of Biology, University College of Science, University of Tehran) ;
  • Keshavarz, Maryam (Department of Animal Physiology, Developmental Biology Laboratory, School of Biology, University College of Science, University of Tehran) ;
  • Ahmadi, Samira (Department of Animal Physiology, Developmental Biology Laboratory, School of Biology, University College of Science, University of Tehran) ;
  • Naderi, Nima (Neuroscience Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences)
  • Published : 2013.12.31


Galectin-3 (Gal-3) is a carbohydrate-binding protein which is thought to be involved in cancer progression but its contribution to epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC) remains unclear. The present study sought to determine the role of Gal-3 in chemoresistance of the human SKOV-3 ovarian cancer cell line to paclitaxel (PTX) using recombinant human Gal-3 (rhGal-3) and PectaSol-C modified citrus pectin (Pect-MCP) as a specific Gal-3 competitive inhibitor. Our results showed 41% increased cell proliferation, 36% decreased caspase-3 activity and 33.6% increased substrate-dependent adhesion in the presence of rhGal-3 compared to the control case (p<0.001). Treatment of cells with a non-effective dose of PTX (100nM) and 0.1% Pect-MCP in combination revealed synergistic cytotoxic effects with 75% reduced cell viability and subsequent 3.9-fold increase in caspase-3 activity. Moreover, there was 39% decrease in substrate-dependent adhesion compared to control (p<0.001). These results suggest that inhibition of Gal-3 could be a useful therapeutic tool for combination therapy of ovarian cancer.


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