Suppression of tumor growth by a new glycosaminoglycan isolated from the African giant snail Achatina fulica

Yeon Sil Lee, Hyun Ok Yang, Kuk Hyun Shin, Hyung Seok Choi, Sang Hoon Jung, Yong Man Kim, Deok Kun Oh, Robert J. Linhardt, Yeong Shik Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

45 Scopus citations


Acharan sulfate is a new type of glycosaminoglycan from the giant African snail, Achatina fulica. Acharan sulfate, which has a primary repeating disaccharide structure of α-D-N-acetylglucosaminyl-2-O-sulfo-α-L-iduronic acid, was studied as a potential antitumor agent in both in vivo and in vitro assays. The antiangiogenic activity of acharan sulfate was evaluated in the chorioallantoic membrane assay and by measuring its effect on the proliferation of calf pulmonary artery endothelial cells. In vivo, a matrigel plug assay showed that acharan sulfate suppressed basic fibroblast growth factor (bFGF)-stimulated angiogenesis and lowered the hemoglobin (Hb) content inside the plug. Acharan sulfate was administered s.c. at two doses for 15 days to C57BL/6 mice implanted with murine Lewis lung carcinoma in the back. It was also administered i.p. to ICR mice bearing sarcoma 180 at a dose of 30 mg/kg. Subcutaneous injection of acharan sulfate at doses of 10 and 30 mg/kg decreased tumor weight and tumor volume by 40% without toxicity or resistance. Intraperitoneal injection of acharan sulfate also decreased tumor weight and volume by 40% in sarcoma 180-bearing mice. These results suggest that the antitumor activity of acharan sulfate may be related to the inhibition of angiogenesis.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)191-198
Number of pages8
JournalEuropean Journal of Pharmacology
Issue number1-2
StatePublished - 28 Mar 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Acharan sulfate
  • Angiogenesis
  • Glycosaminoglycan
  • Matrigel assay
  • Tumor suppression


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