Antiviral properties of fucoidan fractions from Leathesia difformis.
Phytomedicine. 1999 Nov;6(5):335-40. PMID: 11962540
Three fractions of fucoidans isolated from the brown seaweed Leathesia difformis (Ee, Ec and Ea) were found to be selective antiviral agents against herpes simplex virus (HSV) types 1 and 2 and human cytomegalovirus. Fraction Ea was the most active, with IC50 values in the range 0.5-1.9 microg/ml without affecting cell viability at concentrations up to 400 microg/ml. The antiherpetic activity of Ea was assessed by three different methods, plaque reduction, inhibition of virus yield and prevention of HSV-2 induced shut-off of cell protein synthesis, demonstrating that the inhibitory effect was independent of the antiviral assay and the multiplicity of infection. The mode of action of Ea could be ascribed to an inhibitory action on virus adsorption. The fucoidans did not inhibit the blood coagulation process even at concentrations exceeding more than 100 times the IC50 value.