The water-soluble crude polysaccharide (DDP) obtained from the aqueous extracts of the stem of Dendrobium denneanum through hot water extraction followed by ethanol precipitation, was found to have an average molecular weight (Mw) of about 484.7 kDa. Monosaccharide analysis revealed that DDP was composed of arabinose, xylose, mannose, glucose and galactose in a molar ratio of 1.00:2.66:8.92:34.20:10.16. The investigation of antioxidant activity both in vitro and in vivo showed that DDP is a potential antioxidant. ?? 2011.