In comparison to other legume plants, lupin contains small amounts of anti-nutritional compounds, including lectins. However, it has been proved that lupin seeds may contain some lectin-like substances, which can limit the use of lupin in human nutrition. The objective of the study was to evaluate lectin-like properties of narrow-leafed lupin seed globulins. To achieve this, their potential for stimulating lymphocyte proliferation as well as their hemagglutinating properties were analysed. The isolated erythrocytes were treated with some selected protein fractions. The result of the experiment was microscopically assessed. The cultured lymphocytes were treated with globulin fractions and a mitogen, respectively. The amount of proliferating cells was evaluated based on the amount of radioactive thymidine incorporated into the DNA of lymphocytes. The proliferation of lymphocytes was also assessed using a flow cytometry. No cell agglutination was found among the erythrocytes treated with the lupin globulins. Furthermore, the level of cell proliferation did not increase in the population of lymphocytes incubated with the lupin proteins studied, either. Based on the results achieved, it was found that the lupin globulin fractions analysed did not show the ability, appearing typical for lectins, to agglutinate erythrocytes. They did not induce the proliferation of lymphocytes, either. The results obtained prove that those proteins, if eaten with food products, cannot cause the immune reaction to occur owing to the agglutination and activation of lymphocytes or to hemagglutination.
lupin globulins, lectin-like properties, agglutination, proliferation