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Ethyl acetate, methanol and aqueous extracts from 11 species of marine algae collected in Japan were assayed for their in vitro anti-tumor promoting activity and for their inhibitory effect on human aldose reductase. The anti-tumor promoting activity was examined by using the inhibition tests of ^<32>Pi incorporation into phospholipids of HeLa cells and Epstein Barr virus (EBV) activation in Raji cells induced by 12-O-tetradecanoylphorbol-13-acetate (TPA). Of the extracts tested, AcOEt extracts from Sargassum patens C. Agardh and Sargassum muticum C. Agardh (Phaeophyta) showed high inhibitory activities on ^<32>Pi incorporation method and an AcOEt extract of Sargassum muticum, a MeOH extract of Ecklonia cave Kjellman (Phaeophyta) and aqueous extracts from Amphiroa zonata Yendo and Gigartina tenella Harvey (Rhodophyta) on EBV activation method. The inhibitory effects on human aldose reductase of marine algae were found in an AcOEt extract from Ecklonia cave, from which was isolated l-(3',5'-dihydroxyphenoxy)-2,4,7,9-tetra- hydroxydibenzo-1,4-dioxin (1).