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International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms

Impact factor: 1.357

ISSN Print: 1521-9437
ISSN Online: 1940-4344

International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms

DOI: 10.1615/IntJMedMushr.v7.i4.20
pages 525-538

Immune Responses to Water-Soluble Ling Zhi Mushroom Ganoderma lucidum (W.Curt.:Fr.) P. Karst. Polysaccharides in Patients with Advanced Colorectal Cancer

Min Huang
Department of Clinical Pharmacology, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Zhongshan (Sun Yat-Sen) University, Guangzhou, R.P. China
Yihuai Gao
Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health, Massey University; Landcare Research, Private Bag 92170, Auckland, New Zealand
Wenbo Tang
Division of Traditional Chinese Medicine, New Zealand Institute of Natural Medicines, Auckland, New Zealand
Xihu Dai
Department of Internal Medicine, Fuzhou General Hospital of Nanjing Military Region of the Peoples' Liberation Army, Fuzhou, R.P. China
He Gao
Division of Traditional Chinese Medicine, New Zealand Institute of Natural Medicines, Auckland, New Zealand
Guoliang Chen
Division of Traditional Chinese Medicine, New Zealand Institute of Natural Medicines, Auckland, New Zealand
Jingxian Ye
Department of Integrated Medicine. Hospital of Fujian University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Fuzhou, R.P. China
Eli Chan
Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Science, National University of Singapore, Singapore
Shufeng Zhou
Division of Pharmacy, School of Life Sciences, Faculty of Science, Queensland University of Technology, Australia; Department of Pharmacy, Faculty of Science, National University of Singapore; University of South Florida FL 33612, USA

ABSTRACT

Preclinical studies have established that the polysaccharide fractions of Ganoderma lucidum have potent immunomodulating effects. A recent clinical study of healthy volunteers demonstrated that G. lucidum did not affect their immune functions. The present open-labeled study aimed to evaluate the effects of water-soluble G. lucidum polysaccharides (Ganopoly) in patients with advanced colorectal cancer. Forty-seven patients were enrolled and treated with Ganopoly at 5.4 g/day for 12 weeks. In 41 assessable cancer patients, treatment with Ganopoly tended to increase mitogenic reactivity to phytohemagglutinin; counts of CD3, CD4, CD8, and CD56; plasma concentrations of interleukin (IL)-2, IL-6, and interferon (IFN)-γ; and NK activity, but to decrease the plasma concentrations of IL-1 and tumor necrosis factor (TNF)-α. No statistical significance was observed when a comparison was conducted between baseline values and those after 12-week treatment with Ganopoly. The changes of IL-1 were correlated with those of IL-6, IFN-γ, CD3, CD4, CD8, and NK activity (p < 0.05), and IL-2 changes were correlated with those for IL-6, CD8, and NK activity. The results indicate that Ganopoly may have beneficial immunomodulating effects in patients with advanced colorectal cancer. Further studies are needed to explore the mode of action, efficacy, and safety of Ganopoly in cancer patients.