The effects of F III-2-b (Agaricus blazei Murill polysaccharide) with or without 5-fluorouracil (5-FU) on immune responses were investigated in Meth A tumor-bearing and normal mice. The i.p. administration of F III-2-b (10 mg/kg/day × 30) moderately inhibited the growth of Meth A tumor cells implanted s.c. in mice. Development of implanted tumors was strongly inhibited by the combination of F III-2-b and 5-FU. The picryl chloride-induced delayed type hypersensitivity (PC-DTH) response in mice was depressed after the implantation of tumor and treatment with 5-FU. F III-2-b restored the suppression of PC-DTH by 5-FU, but did not increase the PC-DTH of normal mice. F III-2-b not only enhanced the degree of spleen cell-mediated sheep red blood cells (SRBC) hemolysis (quantitative hemolysis of SRBC), the indexes of the spleen and thymus, and the number of spleen cells but also restored the suppressive effect of 5-FU. In the group receiving F III-2-b, the percentages of splenic Thy1.2-, L3T4- and asialo GM1-positive cells were significantly increased as compared with the tumor-bearing mice treated with saline. Furthermore, the L3T4+/Lyt2+ ratio showed a tendency to increase, and the Lyt2+/Thy1.2+ ratio was markedly decreased. These results suggest that the antitumor effect of F III-2-b may be correlated with the changing pattern of the Thyl.2-, L3T4- and asialo GM1-positive cells.
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