Structure analysis and anti-fatigue activity of a polysaccharide from Lepidium meyenii Walp

A polysaccharide was obtained from Lepidium meyenii Walp by hot water extraction and purification by Millipore (100 kD) and Sephadex G-200. The content of polysaccharide was examined to be 89.9% with phenol-sulfuric acid method. Its average molecular weight was estimated to be 2.213 × 106 Da by High Performance Gel Permeation Chromatography (HPGPC). Monosaccharide analysis showed that the polysaccharide was composed of arabinose, mannose, glucose and galactose with the molar ratio of 2.134: 1: 2.78: 2.82. After Smith degradation, methylation, infrared spectroscopy and NMR, the primary structure of the polysaccharide was identified. The backbone of the polysaccharide was composed of →4)-β-D-Galp-(1→ and →4)-α-D-Galp-(1→, while the branches were comprised of →6)-β-D-Glup-(1→, →5)- β-D-Araf-(1→, →3,6)-α-D-Manp-(1→, →3)-α-D-Galp-(1→, and α-D-Glup-(1→. The anti-fatigue effect of the polysaccharide was evaluated using exhaustive swimming test and biochemical indexes. The results indicated the polysaccharide has anti-fatigue effect.