Galectin-3 regulates proinflammatory cytokine function and favours Brucella abortus chronic replication in macrophages and mice

Fernanda L. Tana, Erika S. Guimarães, Daiane M. Cerqueira, Priscila C. Campos, Marco Túlio R. Gomes, Fábio V. Marinho, Sergio C. Oliveira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


In this study, we provide evidence that galectin-3 (Gal-3) plays an important role in Brucella abortus infection. Our results showed increased Gal-3 expression and secretion in B. abortus infected macrophages and mice. Additionally, our findings indicate that Gal-3 is dispensable for Brucella-containing vacuoles disruption, inflammasome activation and pyroptosis. On the other hand, we observed that Brucella-induced Gal-3 expression is crucial for induction of molecules associated to type I IFN signalling pathway, such as IFN-β: Interferon beta (IFN-β), C-X-C motif chemokine ligand 10 (CXCL10) and guanylate-binding proteins. Gal-3 KO macrophages showed reduced bacterial numbers compared to wild-type cells, suggesting that Gal-3 facilitates bacterial replication in vitro. Moreover, priming Gal-3 KO cells with IFN-β favoured B. abortus survival in macrophages. Additionally, we also observed that Gal-3 KO mice are more resistant to B. abortus infection and these animals showed elevated production of proinflammatory cytokines when compared to control mice. Finally, we observed an increased recruitment of macrophages, dendritic cells and neutrophils in spleens of Gal-3 KO mice compared to wild-type animals. In conclusion, this study demonstrated that Brucella-induced Gal-3 is detrimental to host and this molecule is implicated in inhibition of recruitment and activation of immune cells, which promotes B. abortus spread and aggravates the infection. Take Aways: Brucella abortus infection upregulates galectin-3 expression Galectin-3 regulates guanylate-binding proteins expression but is not required for Brucella-containing vacuole disruption Galectin-3 modulates proinflammatory cytokine production during bacterial infection Galectin-3 favours Brucella replication.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numbere13375
JournalCellular Microbiology
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Brucella abortus
  • galectin-3
  • guanylate-binding protein
  • inflammasome
  • type I IFN
  • vacuole

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Microbiology
  • Immunology
  • Virology


Dive into the research topics of 'Galectin-3 regulates proinflammatory cytokine function and favours Brucella abortus chronic replication in macrophages and mice'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this