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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

A galactose-inhibitable mitogen for human lymphocytes from the sponge axinella polypoides.

Of two galactose-binding hemagglutinins isolated from the sponge Axinella polypoides, axinella I was strongly mitogenic for human peripheral blood lymphocytes, and axinella II was not. Purified T cells responded strongly and B cells weakly to axinella I. Mitogenic response, as monitored by rate of 3H-thymidine incorporation on the third day of culture, was specifically inhibited by Dgalactose, Dfucose, raffinose, or 2-deoxy-D-galactose added within 5 hr of the mitogen. Mitogenic response was correlated with degree of lymphocyte agglutination. The effectiveness of a given sugar in inhibiting mitogenic response to axinella I paralleled its potency in inhibiting precipitation of lectin by blood group substances. If an inhibitory concentration of Dgalactose was add 24 to 40 hr after mitogenic activation, rate of 3H-thymadine uptake at 72 hr was two to twenty times above the rate induced in cultures to which no galactose was added. Dgalactose at a subinhibitory concentration (10mug/ml) enhanced 3H-thymidine incorportion incorporation induced by phytohemagglutinin or Con A, an effect reversible by Dgalactose. These findings suggest that axinella I has tow antagonistic effects on human lymphocytes: a) mitogenic activation and b) depressive activity resulting from depletion of essential galactose moieties.[1]


  1. A galactose-inhibitable mitogen for human lymphocytes from the sponge axinella polypoides. Phillips, S.G., Bretting, H., Kabat, E.A. J. Immunol. (1976) [Pubmed]
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