, Volume 1, Issue 3, pp 169-177

Augmentation of resistance of mice to bacterial infection by a polysaccharide-peptidoglycan complex (PSPG) extracted fromLactobacillus casei

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A water-soluble polysaccharide-peptidoglycan complex (PSPG) was prepared from heat-killedLactobacillus casei by digesting the bacteria with N-acetylmuramidase. The molecular weight of PSPG was over 30,000, and the polysaccharide portion of PSPG, its main component was composed of rhamnose, glucose, galactose, glucosamine and galactosamine. Mice pretreated intraperitoneally with PSPG survived after a lethal infection withListeria monocytogenes orPseudomonas aeruginosa. The growth of infecting bacteria (L. monocytogenes, P. aeruginosa, Salmonella typhimurium, Escherichia coli) in both the peritoneal cavity and the liver was inhibited markedly in the mice that had been treated with PSPG. It was suggested that macrophages may be the main effector for the anti-infectious effect of PSPG since treatment of mice with carrageenan, a selective macrophage blocker, markedly reduced the anti-infectious effect of PSPG.