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October 2021

Structure and Properties of Polysaccharides from Viscum album (L.)

Author(s): Wagner, H.

Journal/Book: Oncology. 1986; 43/1: 8-15.

Abstract: Polysaccharides are possibly involved in the pharmacological effects of Viscum album (mistletoe) extracts, which are used in cancer therapy. Therefore the water-soluble polysaccharides of the fresh plant and -, e fermented proprietary preparation Iscador? were isolated and characterized inter alia by methylation analysis, partial hydrolysis and C- 1 3-NMR spectroscopy. The main polysaccharide of the green parts of Viscum is a highly esterified galacturonan whereas in Viscum 'berries' a complex arabinogalactan is predominant. Both types of these constituents were found in Iscador but with definite changes in molecular weight and structure. An interaction between the arabinogalactan and the galactose-specific lectin (ML I) in Viscum could be demonstrated. In three immunological tests (granulocyte, chemiluminescence, carbon clearance test) the polysaccharides failed to increase phagocytic activity of granulocytes and macrophages.

Keyword(s): Viscum album

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