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  • Short Communication
  • Open Access

Galectin-1 expression in innervated and denervated skeletal muscle

Cellular & Molecular Biology LettersAn International Journal200814:39

  • Received: 29 February 2008
  • Accepted: 17 July 2008
  • Published:


Galectin-1 is a soluble carbohydrate-binding protein with a particularly high expression in skeletal muscle. Galectin-1 has been implicated in skeletal muscle development and in adult muscle regeneration, but also in the degeneration of neuronal processes and/or in peripheral nerve regeneration. Exogenously supplied oxidized galectin-1, which lacks carbohydrate-binding properties, has been shown to promote neurite outgrowth after sciatic nerve sectioning. In this study, we compared the expression of galectin-1 mRNA and immunoreactivity in innervated and denervated mouse and rat hind-limb and hemidiaphragm muscles. The results show that galectin-1 mRNA expression and immunoreactivity are up-regulated following denervation. The galectin-1 mRNA is expressed in the extrasynaptic and perisynaptic regions of the muscle, and its immunoreactivity can be detected in both regions by Western blot analysis. The results are compatible with a role for galectin-1 in facilitating reinnervation of denervated skeletal muscle.

Key words

  • Galectin-1
  • Skeletal muscle
  • Denervation