Endogenous receptors fore carbohydrate ligands in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC)

  • R. Heicappell
  • H. Buszello
  • S. Gabius
  • R. Ackermann
  • H.-J. Gabius


The purpose of this study was to analyse expression of endogenous lectins in human renal cell carcinoma (RCC).

Frozen sections of 44 tumor specimens were analysed for endogenous lectins. In the majority of specimens, lectins with specificity for maltose and N-acetyl-galactosamine were detected. Specimens of both the primary tumor and metastasis were available in 10 cases.

When lectin expression of primary tumor and metastasis were compared, the patterns of lectin expression were similar with no clear gain or loss of certain lectins in the metastases. Lectins were further analysed in a set of human RCC cell lines that were derived from the same surgical specimen by growth in nude mice. The cell lines were grown from a primary tumor in nude mice, from a liver metastasis thereof and malignant ascites; they thus represented different subpopulations present in the primary tumor. Patterns of lectin expression of the cell lines was heterogeneous.

Ligand binding analysis with neoglycoenzymes revealed that a lectin with specificity for maltose appeared to be modified in the cell derived from malignant ascites as compared to the parental cell line.

From our data, we conclude that lectins with specificity for maltose and N-acetyl-galactosamine are present on human RCC and their corresponding metastases. In the process of tumor progression, the maltose lectin may undergo modifications.


Renal Cell Carcinoma Liver Metastasis Nude Mouse Sialic Acid Malignant Ascites 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1991

Authors and Affiliations

  • R. Heicappell
    • 1
  • H. Buszello
    • 1
  • S. Gabius
    • 2
  • R. Ackermann
    • 1
  • H.-J. Gabius
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of UrologyHeinrich-Heine UniversityDüsseldorfGermany
  2. 2.Division of Hematology/OncologyDepartment of Internal MedicineGöttingenGermany
  3. 3.Department of ChemistryMax-Planck-Institute for Experimental MedicineGöttingenGermany

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