Dextran Sulfate Sodium (DSS)

Dextran sulfate (AKA: DSS or Dextran sulfate sodium salt) is a polyanionic derivative of dextran produced by esterification of Dextran with chlorosulphonic acid. The sulfur content is approximately 17% which corresponds to an average of 1.9 sulfate groups per glucosyl residue of the dextran molecule.

Dextran Sulfat for Colitis Reaserch:

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Typical Uses:
  • Increases hybridization rate of nucleic acids - in the presence of 10% dextran sulfate the rate of reannealing of DNA in solution was increased by about 10 times.15 This observation was later extended to the hybridization of single or doublestranded probes to DNA or RNA immobilized on filter paper.9,16 The addition of 10% dextran sulfate may increase the rate of hybridization of randomly cleaved double-stranded DNA probes to immobilized nucleic acids by as much as 100 times.16
  • Shows immunologically relevant activities:
1. enhancement and suppression of humoral immunity3,4
2. polyclonal activation of B-lymphocytes, stimulating even immature B cells6
3. changes in thymocyte reactivity to lectins1
4. inhibition of blood coagulation and platelet aggregation11
5. enhancement of blood fibrinolytic activity11
6. enhancement/suppression of cell-mediated immune responses.2,10
  • Precipitates LDL and VLDL lipoproteins - in the presence of magnesium ions, dextran sulfate precipitates low-density lipoproteins from human serum leaving the high-density lipoproteins in the supernatant. Removal of lipoproteins by dextran sulfate precipitation may be useful in the purification of other materials such as beta2 glycoprotein.8
  • Shows activity as an adjuvant.
1. Blitstein-Willinger, E., Schutz, G. and Diamanststein, T., "Changes in thymocyte reactivity to lectins by B-cell mitogens of the type
of sulphated polyanions." Immunology, v. 30, 529-533 (1976).
2. Bradfield, J.W.B., Souhami, R.L., Addison, J.E., "The mechanism of the adjuvant action of dextran sulphate." Immunology, v.
26, 383-386 (1974).
3. Diamantstein, T., et al., "Stimulation of humoral antibody formation by polyanions. II. The influence of sulphate esters of polymers
on the immune response on mice." Eur. J. Immunol., v. 1, 340-343 (1971).
4. Diamantstein, T., et al., "Suppression of the primary immune response in vivo to sheep red blood cells by B-cell mitogens."
Immunology, v. 30, 401-405 (1976).
5. Finley, P.R., et al., "Cholesterol in high-density lipoprotein: Use of Mg+2/dextran sulphate in its enzymatic measurement." Clin.
Chem., v. 24, 931-933 (1978).
6. Granstrom, M., et al., "The polyclonal B-cell activator Dextran sulphate induces formation of colony stimulating activity." Scand. J.
Immunol., v. 7, 277-284 (1978).
7. Laderman, L., Kawasaki, E.S and Szabo, P., "The rate of nucleic acid annealing to cytological preparation is increased in the
presence of dextran sulphate." Anal. Biochem., v. 117, 158-163 (1981).
8. Lambin, P. and Burstein, M., "Isolation of a beta2-glycoprotein from human serum after precipitation with dextran sulphate and
manganese chloride." Biochimie, v. 64, 1065-1071 (1982).
9. Maniatis, T., Fritsch, E. and Sambrook, F. (eds.), Molecular Cloning: A Laboratory Manual, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
10. McCarthey, R.E. and Babcock, G.F., "Simultaneous stimulation and suppression of two different indicators of the cell-mediated
immune response by the immunoregulator dextran sulphate." Immunology, v. 34, 827-929 (1978).
11. Nakajima, K., et al., "Effects of dextran sulphate on blood coagulation and fibrinolysis in spontaneously hypertensive rats." Adv.
Inflamm. Res., v. 1, 331-337 (1979).
12. Ricketts, C.R., "Dextran Sulphate - A synthetic analogue of Heparin." Biochemistry, v. 51, 129-133 (1952).
13. Ricketts, C.R., "A basic derivative of dextran and its interaction with serum albumin." Biochem. J., v. 76, 117-120 (1960).
14. Warnick, G.R., et al., "HDL cholesterol quantitation by phosphotungstate - Mg2+ and by dextran sulphate - Mn2+ - polyethylene
glycol precipitation, both with enzymatic cholesterol assay compared with the lipid research method." Amer. J. Clin. Pathol., v.
78, 718-723 (1982).
15. Wetmur, J.G., "Acceleration of DNA renaturation rates." Biopolymers, v. 14, 2517-2524 (1975).
16. Wahl, G.M., et al., "Efficient transfer of large DNA fragments from agarose gels to diazobenzyloxymethyl-paper and rapid
hybridization with dextran sulfate." Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. USA, v. 76, 3683 (1979).
17. Merck Index, 12th Ed., No. 2993.
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