Identification and functional characterization of lactadherin, an agglutinating glycoprotein from the chordate Styela clava

  • Xin Guo
  • Xiaoju Dou
  • Bo DongEmail author


Lactadherin is an extracellular matrix glycoprotein with stimulating agglutination ability that plays crucial roles in animal immunology. In the present study, a novel lactadherin, Sc-lactadherin, was identified from the marine invertebrate chordate, Styela clava. Its full-length cDNA consisted of 579 bps, encoding 193 amino acids with a coagulation FA58C domain. Recombinant Sc-lactadherin via a prokaryotic expression system showed strong hemocyte fusion activity. Therefore, we further examined its effects on cell behaviors using human umbilical vein endothelial cells (HUVECs) and human cervical cancer (HeLa) cells. Recombinant Sc-lactadherin significantly increased the proliferation rate of HUVECs and HeLa cells and improved the cell migration rate of HUVECs. These results demonstrated that the lactadherin identified from the marine ascidian displayed the agglutinating activity. Functional characterization of the recombinant protein showed that it promoted cell proliferation and migration, indicating the potential roles of Sc-lactadherin in immunology and organogenesis in marine ascidians.


Lactadherin Styela clava Cell agglutination Cell proliferation Cell migration 



The HUVECs and HeLa cells were provided by Dr. Liu Ya (Ocean University of China, Qingdao, China).

Funding information

This work was supported by the National Key Research and Development Program of China (2018YFD0900705), the National Natural Science Foundation of China (Grant No. 31771649), the Fundamental Research Funds for the Central Universities (201822016), and the Taishan Scholar Program of Shandong Province, China (201502035).

Compliance with ethical standards

Competing interests

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.


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Copyright information

© The Society for In Vitro Biology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Laboratory of Morphogenesis & Evolution, College of Marine Life SciencesOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina
  2. 2.Laboratory for Marine Biology and BiotechnologyQingdao National Laboratory for Marine Science and TechnologyQingdaoChina
  3. 3.Institute of Evolution & Marine BiodiversityOcean University of ChinaQingdaoChina
  4. 4.College of Agricultural Science and TechnologyTibet Vocational Technical CollegeLhasaChina

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