PG27, an extract of Tripterygium wilfordii hook f, induces antigen-specific tolerance in bone marrow transplantation in mice

Blood. 2000 Jan 15;95(2):705-10.


PG27, an active fraction purified from an extract of a Chinese herb, Tripterygium wilfordii hook f, was used to prevent graft-versus-host disease (GVHD) in a murine model. Lethally irradiated BALB/c (H-2(d)) recipients of B10.D2 (H-2(d)) donor grafts were given daily intraperitoneal injections of PG27 (40 mg/kg per day) for the first 35 days after transplantation. Control mice were given daily injections of solvent vehicle (Ethanol and Cremophor EL). All the control recipients (15/15) died of GVHD within 90 days, but all the recipients given prophylactic treatment with PG27 (15/15) survived beyond 100 days without any signs of GVHD. Furthermore, the GVHD-free recipients were used as donors, and their bone marrow and spleen cells were transplanted into lethally irradiated normal BALB/c (same party) or lethally irradiated normal C3H (H-2(k), third party) mice. Although 10 of 10 same-party recipients survived more than 100 days without any signs of GVHD, 10 of 10 third-party C3H recipients died of GVHD within 40 days. Further studies of PG27 in the murine BCL1 leukemia/lymphoma model demonstrated that animals treated with PG27 partially retained the graft-versus-leukemia (GVL) effect of the graft without GVHD. These results suggest that treatment with PG27 induces host-specific tolerance and retains the GVL effect of allogeneic marrow grafts. (Blood. 2000;95:705-710)

MeSH terms

  • Adoptive Transfer
  • Animals
  • Bone Marrow Transplantation / immunology*
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal*
  • Graft vs Host Disease / immunology
  • Graft vs Host Disease / prevention & control*
  • Immunosuppressive Agents / pharmacology*
  • Interleukin-1 / genetics
  • Leukemia, Experimental / immunology
  • Leukemia, Experimental / therapy*
  • Lymphocyte Culture Test, Mixed
  • Lymphocyte Transfusion
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Mice, Inbred C3H
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • Mice, Inbred Strains
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Spleen / immunology
  • Transplantation, Homologous


  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Immunosuppressive Agents
  • Interleukin-1
  • Plant Extracts