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Viruses. 2012 Jul;4(7):1104-15. doi: 10.3390/v4071104. Epub 2012 Jun 29.

Legume lectins inhibit human parainfluenza virus type 2 infection by interfering with the entry.

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  • 1Microbiology and Immunology Section, Department of Clinical Nutrition, Graduate School of Suzuka University of Medical Science, 1001-1, Kishioka, Suzuka, Mie 510-0293, Japan.


Three lectins with different sugar binding specificities were investigated for anti-viral activity against human parainfluenza virus type 2 (hPIV-2). The lectins, concanavalin A (Con A), lens culinaris agglutinin (LCA) and peanut agglutinin (PNA), inhibited cell fusion and hemadsorption induced by hPIV-2. Virus nucleoprotein (NP) gene synthesis was largely inhibited, but fusion (F) and hemagglutinin-neuraminidase (HN) gene syntheses were not. An indirect immunofluorescence study showed that Con A inhibited virus NP, F and HN protein syntheses, but LCA did not completely inhibit them, and that PNA inhibited only NP protein synthesis. Using a recombinant green fluorescence protein-expressing hPIV-2, without matrix protein (rghPIV-2ΔM), it was found that virus entry into the cells was not completely prevented. The lectins considerably reduced the number of viruses released compared with that of virus infected cells. The lectins bound to cell surface within 10 min, and many aggregates were observed at 30 min. Con A and LCA slightly disrupted actin microfilaments and microtubules, but PNA had almost no effect on them. These results indicated that the inhibitory effects of the lectins were caused mainly by the considerable prevention of virus adsorption to the cells by the lectin binding to their receptors.


a recombinant green fluorescence protein expressing hPIV-2 without matrix protein; concanavalin A; human parainfluenza virus type 2; lens culinarisis agglutinin; peanut agglutinin

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