A 15-kDa lectin, termed SeviL, was isolated from Mytilisepta virgata (purplish bifurcate mussel). SeviL forms a noncovalent dimer that binds strongly to ganglio-series GM1b oligosaccharide (Neu5Acɑ2-3Galβ1-3GalNAcβ1-4Galβ1-4Glc) and its precursor, asialo-GM1 (Galβ1-3GalNAcβ1-4Galβ1-4Glc). SeviL also interacts weakly with the glycan moiety of SSEA-4 hexaose (Neu5Acα2-3Galβ1-3GalNAcβ1-3Galα1-4Galβ1-4Glc). A partial protein sequence of the lectin was determined by mass spectrometry, and the complete sequence was identified from transcriptomic analysis. SeviL, consisting of 129 amino acids, was classified as an R(icin B)-type lectin, based on the presence of the QxW motif characteristic of this fold. SeviL mRNA is highly expressed in gills and, in particular, mantle rim tissues. Orthologue sequences were identified in other species of the family Mytilidae, including Mytilus galloprovincialis, from which lectin MytiLec-1 was isolated and characterized in our previous studies. Thus, mytilid species contain lectins belonging to at least two distinct families (R-type lectins and mytilectins) that have a common β-trefoil fold structure but differing glycan-binding specificities. SeviL displayed notable cytotoxic (apoptotic) effects against various cultured cell lines (human breast, ovarian, and colonic cancer; dog kidney) that possess asialo-GM1 oligosaccharide at the cell surface. This cytotoxic effect was inhibited by the presence of anti-asialo-GM1 oligosaccharide antibodies. With HeLa ovarian cancer cells, SeviL showed dose- and time-dependent activation of kinase MKK3/6, p38 MAPK, and caspase-3/9. The transduction pathways activated by SeviL via the glycosphingolipid oligosaccharide were triggered apoptosis. DATABASE: Nucleotide sequence data have been deposited in the GenBank database under accession numbers MK434191, MK434192, MK434193, MK434194, MK434195, MK434196, MK434197, MK434198, MK434199, MK434200, and MK434201.