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Cellular components of Lactococcus lactis ssp. lactis (heat-killed whole cells, cytoplasm, and cell walls) were tested for their in vivo immunopotentiating activities. Peritoneal macrophages from mice injected intraperitoneally with cell-wall fractions exhibited significantly greater phagocytic activity than groups injected with whole cells or cytoplasm fraction. Cytotoxicity of natural-killer cells was highest in cytoplasm fractions. Production of cytokines (IFN-γ, IL-2, IL-6, and IL-12) in spleen cells was significantly higher when cellular components were injected intraperitoneally, and tended to be higher in whole-cell and cytoplasm groups than in cell-wall group. These results demonstrate lactic acid bacteria whole cells and their cytoplasm and cell-wall fractions have immunopotentiating activities.