2022 Volume 34 Issue 198 Pages E19-E23
The basic whey protein lactoferrin (LF) is a glycosaminoglycan (GAG)-binding protein that plays a role in innate immunity and is expected to be a potential biopharmaceutical because of its diverse functions. LF binds to heparan sulfate, a type of GAG on the cell surface, and is involved in neuroprotective and anti-cancer activities. Recently, it was found that human LF (hLF) binds to chondroitin sulfate E (CS-E), which inhibits neuronal axon outgrowth and neutralizes CS-E-induced axon outgrowth inhibition. LFs are potential therapeutic targets for GAG-related diseases, such as cancer, neurodegenerative diseases, and infectious diseases. This article outlines the general properties of LF and discusses the binding properties of hLF to CS-E and its application.