Galectin-1 is considered to be a regulator protein as it is ubiquitously expressed throughout the adult body and is responsible for a broad range of cellular regulatory functions. Interest in galectin-1 from a drug-design perspective is founded on evidence of its overexpression by many cancers and its immunomodulatory properties. The development of galectin-1-specific inhibitors is a rational approach to the fight against cancer because although galectin-1 induces a plethora of effects, null mice appear normal. X-ray crystallographic structure determination will aid the structure-based design of galectin-1 inhibitors. Here, the crystallization and preliminary diffraction analysis of human galectin-1 crystals generated under six different conditions is reported. X-ray diffraction data enabled the assignment of unit-cell parameters for crystals grown under two conditions, one belongs to a tetragonal crystal system and the other was determined as monoclinic P21, representing two new crystal forms of human galectin-1. © International Union of Crystallography 2007.