Anti-influenza virus effects of elderberry juice and its fractions

Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2012;76(9):1633-8. doi: 10.1271/bbb.120112. Epub 2012 Sep 7.


Elderberry (Sambucus nigra L.) has traditionally been used for treating influenza and colds. We evaluated the antiviral effect of concentrated juice of elderberry (CJ-E) on the human influenza A virus (IFV). CJ-E had a relatively strong effect on IFV-infected mice, although its anti-IFV activity was weak in a cell culture system. The in vivo anti-IFV activities of the fractions were determined after separating CJ-E by ultrafiltration and anion-exchange chromatography. Oral administration of the high-molecular-weight fractions of CJ-E to IFV-infected mice suppressed viral replication in the bronchoalveolar lavage fluids (BALFs), and increased the level of the IFV-specific neutralizing antibody in the serum, as well as the level of secretory IgA in BALFs and feces. Fr. II from high-molecular-weight fraction HM, which contained acidic polysaccharides, showed relatively strong defense against IFV infection. We conclude that CJ-E had a beneficial effect by the stimulating immune response and preventing viral infection.

MeSH terms

  • Administration, Oral
  • Animals
  • Antibodies, Neutralizing / blood
  • Antiviral Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Antiviral Agents / isolation & purification
  • Beverages*
  • Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid / virology
  • Cell Line
  • Chemical Fractionation
  • Chromatography, Ion Exchange
  • Dogs
  • Fruit*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate / drug effects
  • Influenza A virus / drug effects*
  • Influenza A virus / physiology
  • Mice
  • Molecular Weight
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / drug therapy*
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / immunology
  • Orthomyxoviridae Infections / virology
  • Phytotherapy*
  • Plant Extracts
  • Sambucus*
  • Ultrafiltration
  • Virus Replication / drug effects


  • Antibodies, Neutralizing
  • Antiviral Agents
  • Plant Extracts