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Int J Food Microbiol. 2001 May 10;65(3):149-62.

AT oligonucleotides inducing B lymphocyte activation exist in probiotic Lactobacillus gasseri.

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Laboratory of Animal Products Chemistry, Graduate School of Agricultural Science, Tohoku University, Sendai, Japan.


This study determined oligonucleotide sequences of mitogenic DNA derived from lactic acid bacteria (LAB). The chromosomal DNA, which was purified from 12 out of 16 strains of Lactobacillus acidophilus group LAB, induced proliferation of splenic lymphocytes. When DNA from L. gasseri JCM1131T was cloned and amplified using PCR, the mitogenic activities of B lymphocytes were significantly increased by 108 of 321 DNA clones. Ten high homologous nucleotide sequences were found as possible DNA sequences of mitogens, and were then chemically synthesized (sOL-LG1 to sOL-LG10). Two nucleotide sequences (sOL-LG7 and sOL-LG10) that consist of only A and T nucleotides (AT oligonucleotides) were characterized as B lymphocyte specific mitogens because they resulted in proliferation of B lymphocytes but not of T lymphocytes. sOL-LG7 preferentially bound to large B lymphocytes and enhanced the expression of the CD86 antigen more than the CD69 antigen on B lymphocytes. The findings show that mitogenic AT oligonucleotides are likely to restrict pre-activated subsets of B lymphocytes. This study demonstrated that novel AT oligonucleotides triggering B lymphocyte mitogenic responses exist in the nucleoids of L. gasseri and proposed that they have potential as applicants for the production of new functional foods, "Bio-Defense Foods".

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