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A new lectin was purified from larvae of the fly, Musca domestica L. (Diptera: Muscidae) (MLL-2, 38 kDa) using affinity chromatography and HPLC. Anti-tumor activity of MLL-2 was demonstrated by its inhibition of proliferation of human breast cancer (MCF-7) cells in a time-and dose-dependent manner. The results of acridine orange staining indicated that MLL-2 caused apoptosis in MCF-7 cells. DNA fragmentation in MCF-7 cells has been detected by TUNEL. Flow cytometric analysis also demonstrated that MLL-2 caused dose-dependent apoptosis of MCF-7 cells through cell arrest at G2/M phase. The MLL-2 induced a sustained increase in concentration of intracellular free calcium. Western blot revealed that MLL-2 induced apoptosis in MCF-7 cells was associated with typical apoptosis proteins in the mitochondrial pathway. In addition, the caspase-3 activity in MCF-7 cells treated with MLL-2 for 48 hours was significantly increased compared to controls (407.4 ± 3.0 vs. 1749.2 ± 6.0, P <0.01). Since MLL-2 induced apoptosis in MCF-7cells the mitochondrial pathway may be the main pathway of antitumor activity.