Purification and characterization of a novel immunomodulatory protein from the medicinal mushroom Trametes versicolor


Bioactive proteins represent an important group of functional agents in medicinal mushrooms. Trametes versicolor (L.) Lloyd is a mushroom frequently used in traditional Chinese medicine for its anti-tumor and immunomodulatory activities. A new immunomodulatory protein from T. versicolor, named TVC, was purified by ammonium sulfate precipitation, ion-exchange chromatography and gel filtration chromatography. Sodium dodecyl sulfate-polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis analysis of the purified protein revealed a single band with a molecular weight of 15.0 kD. Native polyacrylamide gel analysis revealed a band at 30 kD, indicating that TVC exists in solution as a homodimer. Isoelectric focusing showed that TVC was an acidic protein with an isoelectric point of 4.0. TVC was found to lack carbohydrate modifications (based on periodic acid/Schiff staining) and it does not agglutinate mouse red blood cells, suggesting that TVC is not a lectin-like protein. Biological activity assays demonstrated that TVC can enhance the proliferation of splenocytes, while it has no stimulatory effects on CD4+ and CD8+ T cells. TVC markedly increases the proliferation of human peripheral blood lymphocytes in a dose-dependent manner and enhances the production of both nitric oxide and tumor necrosis factor-alpha by lipopolysaccharide-induced murine macrophages. The results indicate that TVC is an immunostimulant that can boost immune response. Comparison of the N-terminal amino acid residues and mass spectrometry results with the protein database revealed no homologous proteins.


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Correspondence to HuaAn Wen or XingZhong Liu.

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Li, F., Wen, H., Zhang, Y. et al. Purification and characterization of a novel immunomodulatory protein from the medicinal mushroom Trametes versicolor. Sci. China Life Sci. 54, 379–385 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s11427-011-4153-2

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  • biological activity
  • immunomodulatory protein
  • medicinal mushroom
  • purification
  • Trametes versicolor