2002 Volume 25 Issue 7 Pages 931-939
Sparassis crispa Fr. is an edible mushroom recently cultivable in Japan. It contains a remarkably high content of 6-branched 1,3-β-D-glucan showing antitumor activity. Using ion-exchange chromatography, a purified β-glucan preparation, SCG, was prepared. In this study, we examined the hematopoietic response by SCG in cyclophosphamide (CY)-induced leukopenic mice. SCG enhanced the hematopoietic response in CY induced leukopenic mice by intraperitoneal routes over a wide range of concentrations. SCG enhanced the hematopoietic response in CY-treated mice by prior or post administration. Analyzing the leukocyte population by flow cytometry, monocytes and granulocytes in the peritoneal cavity, liver, spleen and bone marrow (BM) recovered faster than in the control group. The ratio of natural killer cells and γδ T cells in the liver, spleen and peritoneal cavity was also increased. In contrast, CD4+ CD8+ cells in the thymus were temporarily significantly decreased by the administration of SCG. Interleukin-6 (IL-6) production of CY+SCG-treated peritoneal exdated cells (PECs), spleen cells and bone marrow cells (BMCs) were higher than that of the CY-treated group. By in vitro culture of CY-treated PEC and spleen cells, IL-6 production was enhanced by the addition of SCG. These facts suggested the possibility that IL-6 might be a key cytokine for the enhanced hematopoietic response by SCG.