Introduction Galectin-3 is a human lectin involved in cellular processes including differentiation, apoptosis, angiogenesis, neoplastic transformation, and metastasis. We evaluated galectin-3C, an N-terminally truncated form of galectin-3 that is thought to act as a dominant negative inhibitor, as a potential treatment for multiple myeloma (MM). Methods We analyzed 9 human MM cell lines tested in vitro for cell proliferation/viability; chemotaxis. The human MM cell lines used in this study were RPMI-8226, U266 (American Type Culture Collection, VA, USA), ARP-1, ARK-B, (gifts from J. Epstein, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, Little Rock, AR, USA). The 8226/Dox and 8226/LR-5 cell lines were kindly provided by Dr. William S. Dalton of the H. Lee Moffitt Cancer Center and Research Institute in Tampa, Florida. All MM cells were cultured in RPMI-1640 medium supplemented with 10% fetal bovine serum (FBS) in 5% CO2 at 37 °C. The 8226/Dox cells were cultured with 40 nM doxorubicin (Sigma-Aldrich, St. Louis, MO, USA). The 8226/LR-5 cells were cultured in media containing 5 µM mephalan (Sigma-Aldrich). 8226/Dox and 8226/LR-5 cells were maintained in drug-free medium for 1 week prior to drug sensitivity assays. Human umbilical cord vascular endothelial cells (HUVEC, American Type Culture Collection, VA, USA) were maintained in EGM-2 medium (Lonza, Houston, TX, USA) and were used within 10 passages. Furthermore we used U266 MM model in the NOD/SCID mice to evaluate the efficacy of galectin-3C in single or in combination with BOR. Results Galectin-3C exhibited modest anti-proliferative effects on MM cells in vitro. Delivery of galectin-3C intravenously via an osmotic pump in a subcutaneous U266 cell NOD/SCID mouse model of MM significantly inhibited tumor growth. Bortezomib, a proteasome inhibitor approved by the F.D.A. for MM treatment, also inhibited the growth of the U266 tumors. Treatment with both agents was more effective than either alone, such that the average tumor volume of the combination group was just 14.0% of controls at day 35. We show that mechanisms by which galectin-3C facilitates the anticancer activity of BOR include inhibition of angiogenesis, chemotaxis, and NF-kB activation. Conclusion In conclusion, our study shows that in a mouse model of human MM, treatment with galectin-3C alone is efficacious, and that it enhances the anti-tumor activity of bortezomib. These findings provide the proof-of-principle to test galectin-3C clinically for human MM.

Citation Format: {Authors}. {Abstract title} [abstract]. In: Proceedings of the 103rd Annual Meeting of the American Association for Cancer Research; 2012 Mar 31-Apr 4; Chicago, IL. Philadelphia (PA): AACR; Cancer Res 2012;72(8 Suppl):Abstract nr 2852. doi:1538-7445.AM2012-2852