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Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia

1. The nature of so-called Tk antigen has been studied. This antigen is related to both blood group specific and tumor-associated antigens. Tk appears on erythrocytes after their treatment with endogalactosidase unmasking the terminal GlcNAc residues. Anti-Tk monoclonal antibodies bound specifically tumors including gastro-intestinal ones but did not bind to membrane antigens of normal cells, thus interacting only with intracellular components of normal cells. Using synthetic oligosaccharides, specificity of these antibodies was determined. The supposition that they bind to the branched motif GlcNAcβ1-6(GlcNAcβ1-3)Gal has been confirmed. In addition, it was found that on tumors, at least on cell lines, the antigen is bound only to O- but not to N-chains. It was demonstrated on animal model that it is possible to prepare oncovaccines at the base of Tk antigen [].

2. Supposing that a tumor is an inflammation site, selectin ligand SiaLex (see Selectins) was used as specific vector (lipophilic form of the tetrasaccharide) for delivery of cytotoxic liposomes to tumor []. Indeed, such liposomes caused drastic increase in life time of mice with grafted tumors, even in case of single preparation administration.

3. The role of carbohydrate chains in phagocytosis of apoptotic bodies obtained from melanoma cell line has been studied on a model where macrophage cell line was used. It was shown that termination Galβ1-3GalNAcβ is the specific component of apoptotic bodies surface during phagocytosis, whereas the specific component of phagocyting cells is, possibly, galectin-1. Moreover, synthetic lipophilic variant of the disaccharide built in apoptotic bodies and administered to experimental mice caused phagocytosis increase and elevated vitality of animals with experimental tumors [].

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