Extracts from sea urchin intestine were screened for new anti-tumour drugs. Four glycolipids, 3'-sulphonoquinovosyl-1', 2'-diacylglyceride (A-4), 3'-sulphonoquinovosyl-1'-monoacylglyceride (2'-lyso A-4, A-5), NeuGc(alpha)2-6Glc(beta)1-1ceramide (A-6) and HSO3-8NeuGc(alpha)2-6Glc(beta)1-1ceramide (A-7), were isolated from the intestine of sea urchin, Strongylocentrotus intermedius, and characterized by means of proton nuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy and fast atom bombardment mass spectrometry. When tested for cytotoxic activity against tumour cells in vitro, A-5 showed significant activity, but A-4, -6 and -7 did not. In addition, the hydrophilic derivatives of A-4 or -5 had no cytotoxicity. Furthermore, the anti-tumour effects on nude mice bearing solid tumours of a human lung adenocarcinoma cell line A-549 were evaluated in vivo using A-4 and -5. As a result, A-5 was found to be significantly effective in suppressing the growth of solid tumours, whereas A-4 had no effect. Pathologically, the solid tumours showed haemorrhagic necrosis areas after treatment with A-5. In this study, we have demonstrated the anti-tumour effect of sulphonoquinovosyl-lysoglyceride (A-5), which provides important information that this sulpholipid could be a useful drug for cancer chemotherapy.