Purification, Characterization and Biological Activity of Polysaccharides from Dendrobium officinale

Molecules. 2016 May 30;21(6):701. doi: 10.3390/molecules21060701.


Polysaccharide (DOPA) from the stem of D. officinale, as well as two fractions (DOPA-1 and DOPA-2) of it, were isolated and purified by DEAE cellulose-52 and Sephacryl S-300 chromatography, and their structural characteristics and bioactivities were investigated. The average molecular weights of DOPA-1 and DOPA-2 were 394 kDa and 362 kDa, respectively. They were mainly composed of d-mannose, d-glucose, and had a backbone consisting of 1,4-linked β-d-Manp and 1,4-linked β-d-Glcp with O-acetyl groups. Bioactivity studies indicated that both DOPA and its purified fractions (DOPA-1 and DOPA-2) could activate splenocytes and macrophages. The D. officinale polysaccharides had stimulatory effects on splenocytes, T-lymphocytes and B-lymphocytes, promoting the cell viability and NO production of RAW 264.7 macrophages. Furthermore, DOPA, DOPA-1 and DOPA-2 were found to protect RAW 264.7 macrophages against hydrogen peroxide (H₂O₂)-induced oxidative injury by promoting cell viability, suppressing apoptosis and ameliorating oxidative lesions. These results suggested that D. officinale polysaccharides possessed antioxidant activity and mild immunostimulatory activity.

Keywords: Dendrobium officinale; antioxidant activity; immunostimulatory activity; polysaccharide; structural characterization.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antioxidants / chemistry
  • Antioxidants / isolation & purification
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Chromatography, Gel
  • Dendrobium / chemistry*
  • Gas Chromatography-Mass Spectrometry
  • Hydrogen Peroxide / pharmacology
  • Immunologic Factors / chemistry
  • Immunologic Factors / isolation & purification
  • Immunologic Factors / pharmacology
  • Lymphocyte Activation / drug effects
  • Macrophages / drug effects
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Male
  • Methylation
  • Mice
  • Molecular Weight
  • Nitric Oxide / biosynthesis
  • Plant Extracts / chemistry*
  • Plant Extracts / isolation & purification
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Polysaccharides / chemistry*
  • Polysaccharides / isolation & purification
  • Polysaccharides / pharmacology*
  • Rats
  • Spectroscopy, Fourier Transform Infrared


  • Antioxidants
  • Immunologic Factors
  • Plant Extracts
  • Polysaccharides
  • Nitric Oxide
  • Hydrogen Peroxide