Galectin-9 plasma levels reflect adverse hematological and immunological features in acute dengue virus infection

Haorile Chagan-Yasutan, Lishomwa C. Ndhlovu, Talitha Lea Lacuesta, Toru Kubo, Prisca Susan A. Leano, Toshiro Niki, Shigeru Oguma, Kouichi Morita, Glen M. Chew, Jason D. Barbour, Elizabeth Freda O. Telan, Mitsuomi Hirashima, Toshio Hattori, Efren M. Dimaano

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47 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Dengue virus (DENV) infection remains a major public health burden worldwide. Soluble mediators may play a critical role in the pathogenesis of acute DENV infection. Galectin-9 (Gal-9) is a soluble β-galactoside-binding lectin, with multiple immunoregulatory and inflammatory properties. Objective: To investigate plasma Gal-9 levels as a biomarker for DENV infection. Study design: We enrolled 65 DENV infected patients during the 2010 epidemic in the Philippines and measured their plasma Gal-9 and cytokine/chemokine levels, DENV genotypes, and copy number during the critical and recovery phases of illness. Results: During the critical phase, Gal-9 levels were significantly higher in DENV infected patients compared to healthy or those with non-dengue febrile illness. The highest Gal-9 levels were observed in dengue hemorrhagic fever (DHF) patients (DHF: 2464. pg/ml; dengue fever patients (DF): 1407. pg/ml; non-dengue febrile illness: 616. pg/ml; healthy: 196. pg/ml). In the recovery phase, Gal-9 levels significantly declined from peak levels in DF and DHF patients. Gal-9 levels tracked viral load, and were associated with multiple cytokines and chemokines (IL-1α, IL-8, IP-10, and VEGF), including monocyte frequencies and hematologic variables of coagulation. Further discriminant analyses showed that eotaxin, Gal-9, IFN-α2, and MCP-1 could detect 92% of DHF and 79.3% of DF, specifically (P < 0.01). Conclusion: Gal-9 appears to track DENV inflammatory responses, and therefore, it could serve as an important novel biomarker of acute DENV infection and disease severity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)635-640
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Clinical Virology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Dec


  • Biomarker
  • Dengue fever
  • Dengue hemorrhagic fever
  • Dengue virus
  • Galectin-9

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Virology
  • Infectious Diseases


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