Saponins from soy bean and mung bean inhibit the antigen specific activation of helper T cells by blocking cell cycle progression

Suk Jun Lee, Joonbeom Bae, Sunhee Kim, Seonah Jeong, Chang Yong Choi, Sang Pil Choi, Hyun Sook Kim, Woon Won Jung, Jee Young Imm, Sae Hun Kim, Taehoon Chun

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Treatment of helper T (Th) cells with saponins from soy bean and mung bean prevented their activation by inhibiting cell proliferation and cytokine secretion. However, the saponins did not affect the expression of major histocompatibility complex class II (Ab) and co-stimulatory molecule (CD86) on professional antigen-presenting cells. Instead, the saponins directly inhibited Th cell proliferation by blocking the G1 to S phase cell cycle transition. Moreover, blocking of the cell cycle by the saponins was achieved by decreased expression of cyclin D1 and cyclin E, and constitutive expression of p27KIP1. Saponins also increased stability of p27KIP1 in Th cells after antigenic stimulation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)165-173
Number of pages9
JournalBiotechnology Letters
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013 Jan 1



  • Cell cycle
  • Cyclin
  • Helper T cell
  • p27
  • Saponin

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biotechnology

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