Abstract The bioactivity screening of fractions from two inter-tidal sponges collected from the north of China Yellow Sea and one sponge collected from the South Chinese Sea was reported in this study. In sponge Hymeniacidon perleve there were 9 fractions out of 15 from CHCl 3 extract with anti Staphylococcus aureus activity, 9 fractions out of 19 from BuOH extract with anti Escherichia coli activity, and three fractions from CHCl 3 extract which had moderate to strong activity in inhibiting Bacillus subtilis, Candida albicans, and Aspergilus niger. The fractions of Reniochalina sp. showed bioactivity against bacteria and fungi. The fractions of Acanthella acuta Schmidt showed bioactivity against S. aureus and fungi. One compound from H. perleve obtained by the bioactively directing isolation was tested for bioactivity against the human hepatoma cell line Qgy7701 (IC 50 10.1 μg/ml), Burkitt's lymphoma cell line Raji (IC 50 9.76 μg/ml) and chronic myelogenous leukemia K562 (IC 50 1.90 μg/ml).