Changes in the T cell surface redox environment regulate critical cell functions, such as cell migration, viral entry and cytokine production. Cell surface protein disulfide isomerase (PDI) contributes to the regulation of T cell surface redox status. Cell surface PDI can be released into the extracellular milieu or can be internalized by T cells. We have found that galectin-9, a soluble lectin expressed by T cells, endothelial cells and dendritic cells, binds to and retains PDI on the cell surface. While endogenous galectin-9 is not required for basal cell surface PDI expression, exogenous galectin-9 mediated retention of cell surface PDI shifted the disulfide/thiol equilibrium on the T cell surface. O-glycans on PDI are required for galectin-9 binding, and PDI recognition appears to be specific for galectin-9, as galectin-1 and galectin-3 do not bind PDI. Galectin-9 is widely expressed by immune and endothelial cells in inflamed tissues, suggesting that T cells would be exposed to abundant galectin-9, in cis and in trans, in infectious or autoimmune conditions.
- Protein disulfide isomerase