Molecular immunology

Expression and tissue localization of collectin placenta 1 (CL-P1, SRCL) in human tissues.

PMID 18423602


Collectin placenta-1 (CL-P1), also known as scavenger receptor with C-type lectin (SRCL), is a type II membrane glycoprotein that shares structural features with both collectins and type A scavenger receptors. CL-P1 was originally cloned from the placenta and found to be associated with endothelial cells. It binds via its lectin domain to desialyated Lewis X containing glycoproteins and it is able to facilitate internalization of bound ligands. Via positively charged residues in the collagen-like region it binds to negatively charged components of microbial membranes. It has previously been proposed that CL-P1 plays a role in the host defense system and in the clearance of glycoproteins from the blood. With the aims of determining the detailed tissue expression of human CL-P1 we expressed CL-P1 recombinantly in both E. coli and CHO cells, and raised monoclonal antibodies against human CL-P1. Three monoclonal antibodies were characterized and used in immunohistochemical analyses of a panel of cryo- and formalin-fixed sections. We find that CL-P1 mainly associates with cytotrophoblasts and syncytiotrophoblasts of the placenta, alveolar macrophages and to a less degree with macrophage-like and stromal cells of the tonsils. By real-time RT-PCR we verified that the placenta is also the main organ of CL-P1 synthesis. The only source of endothelial cells whereto CL-P1 associates are umbilical cord vein endothelial cells (human umbilical vein endothelial cells, HUVEC). In vitro cultured HUVECs express both the CL-P1 mRNA and show anti-CL-P1 immunoreactivity but CL-P1 locates mainly to the cytosol and not to the membrane of these cells. We conclude that CL-P1 is not a common membrane protein on endothelial cells found in normal tissues under steady state conditions.