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Galectins for Diagnosis and Prognostic Assessment of Human Diseases: An Overview of Meta-Analyses

Yiting Liu, Hao Meng, Shixue Xu, Xingshun Qi

Meta-Analysis Interest Group, Department of Gastroenterology, General Hospital of Northern Theater Command, Shenyang, Liaoning, China (mainland)

Med Sci Monit 2020; 26:e923901

DOI: 10.12659/MSM.923901

Available online: 2020-06-05

Published: 2020-08-03

ABSTRACT: An increasing number of studies have explored the activities and functions of galectins. However, translation of these researches into clinical practice seems to be lacking. As compared to scattered individual studies, meta-analyses can provide a more comprehensive review of current evidence and reach a more unbiased and powered conclusion by synthesizing data from diverse studies. In this paper, findings from meta-analyses were reviewed to establish the role of galectins in diagnosis and prognostic assessment of various human diseases. First, in patients with cancer, galectin-1 expression is often associated with poorer survival, but galectin-9 expression is associated with better survival. Galectin-3 is a diagnostic biomarker for thyroid cancer and a predictor of worse survival in patients with colorectal cancer and improved survival in patients with gastric cancer. Second, galectin-3 is useful for diagnosis and prognostic assessment of heart failure and prediction of atrial fibrillation and its recurrence. Third, in chronic kidney disease, galectin-3 is valuable for predicting poor survival. Fourth, during pregnancy, galectin-13 is potentially helpful for identifying patients who do not have preeclampsia.

Keywords: Clinical Alarms, Early Detection of Cancer, Evidence-Based Practice, Galectins, Heart Diseases