Siglec-8 and Siglec-9 binding specificities and endogenous airway ligand distributions and properties

Huifeng Yu, Anabel Gonzalez-Gil, Yadong Wei, Steve M. Fernandes, Ryan N. Porell, Katarina Vajn, James C. Paulson, Corwin M. Nycholat, Ronald L. Schnaar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Siglecs are transmembrane sialoglycan binding proteins, most of which are expressed on leukocyte subsets and have inhibitory motifs that translate cell surface ligation into immune suppression. In humans, Siglec-8 on eosinophils, mast cells and basophils and Siglec-9 on neutrophils, monocytes and some T-cells, mediate immune cell death, inhibition of immune mediator release and/or enhancement of anti-inflammatory mediator release. Endogenous sialoglycan ligands in tissues, mostly uncharacterized, engage siglecs on leukocytes to inhibit inflammation. Glycan array analyses demonstrated that Siglec-8, Siglec-9 and their mouse counterparts Siglec-F and Siglec-E (respectively) have distinct glycan binding specificities, with Siglec-8 more structurally restricted. Since siglecs are involved in lung inflammation, we studied Siglec-8 and Siglec-9 ligands in human lungs and airways. Siglec-8 ligands are in tracheal submucosal glands and cartilage but not airway epithelium or connective tissues, whereas Siglec-9 ligands are broadly distributed. Mouse airways do not have Siglec-8 ligands, whereas Siglec-9 ligands are on airways of both species. Extraction of human airways and lung followed by electrophoretic resolution and siglec blotting revealed Siglec-8 ligands in extracts of human trachea and cultured tracheal gland cells, but not parenchyma or cultured airway epithelial cells whereas Siglec-9 ligands were extracted from all airway and lung tissues and cells tested. Siglec-8 and Siglec-9 ligands in airways appear to be high molecular weight O-linked sialoglycoproteins. These data reveal differential glycan specificities of Siglec-8, Siglec-9 and their mouse counterparts Siglec-F and Siglec-E, and the tissue distributions and molecular characteristics of Siglec-8 and Siglec-9 sialoglycan ligands on human airways and lungs.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)657-668
Number of pages12
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1 2017


  • airways
  • sialic acid
  • siglec
  • submucosal glands
  • trachea

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry


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