Extracellular Galectin 4 Drives Immune Evasion and Promotes T-cell Apoptosis in Pancreatic Cancer.

Lidström T, Cumming J, Gaur R, Frängsmyr L, Pateras IS, Mickert MJ, Franklin O, Forsell MNE, Arnberg N, Dongre M, Patthey C, Öhlund D

Cancer Immunol Res 11 (1) 72-92 [2023-01-03; online 2022-12-09]

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is characterized by rich deposits of extracellular matrix (ECM), affecting the pathophysiology of the disease. Here, we identified galectin 4 (gal 4) as a cancer cell-produced protein that was deposited into the ECM of PDAC tumors and detected high-circulating levels of gal 4 in patients with PDAC. In orthotopic transplantation experiments, we observed increased infiltration of T cells and prolonged survival in immunocompetent mice transplanted with cancer cells with reduced expression of gal 4. Increased survival was not observed in immunodeficient RAG1-/- mice, demonstrating that the effect was mediated by the adaptive immune system. By performing single-cell RNA-sequencing, we found that the myeloid compartment and cancer-associated fibroblast (CAF) subtypes were altered in the transplanted tumors. Reduced gal 4 expression associated with a higher proportion of myofibroblastic CAFs and reduced numbers of inflammatory CAFs. We also found higher proportions of M1 macrophages, T cells, and antigen-presenting dendritic cells in tumors with reduced gal 4 expression. Using a coculture system, we observed that extracellular gal 4 induced apoptosis in T cells by binding N-glycosylation residues on CD3ε/δ. Hence, we show that gal 4 is involved in immune evasion and identify gal 4 as a promising drug target for overcoming immunosuppression in PDAC.

Bioinformatics Support for Computational Resources [Service]

Clinical Genomics Umeå [Service]

PubMed 36478037

DOI 10.1158/2326-6066.CIR-21-1088

Crossref 10.1158/2326-6066.CIR-21-1088

pmc: PMC9808371
pii: 711503

Publications 9.5.0