dextran sulfate

Dr Engelbert Buxbaum engelbert_buxbaum at
Thu Sep 23 05:35:17 EST 2004

Carlo Fasano wrote:

> Hi,
> Iuse dextran sulfate at 5 micrograms/ml to cure for 7 days cells in
> culture that stably express the scapie form of prion protein. Then I
> extract RNA and I'd do an rt-pcr with this RNA. Until now the rt-pcr
> with this samples doesn't work. Now I discover this drugs was used to
> cure HIV-1 virus so may be Dextran Sulfate inhibites rt-polymerase or
> it does something else. Anyone know how the dextran sulfate works?
> What it does? Could suggest me how to skip to this problem?
> Thanks,
> Carlo

This has been a long time ago, but IIRC dextran sulfate was used (not
too successfuly) to block the virus/receptor interaction and/or virus
uptake at the membrane. 

Can you get rid ot the dextran sulfate by pelleting the cells in a
centrifuge (5 min at 250 g) before doing RNA-extraction, repeating once
or twice if necessary?

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