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International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms
IF: 1.423 5-Year IF: 1.525 SJR: 0.431 SNIP: 0.661 CiteScore™: 1.38

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

International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms

DOI: 10.1615/IntJMedMushrooms.2017024823
pages 1061-1070

Identification of Chinese Caterpillar Medicinal Mushroom, Ophiocordyceps sinensis (Ascomycetes) from Counterfeit Species

Wenjuan Zhang
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Xiaolong Zhang
Rice Research Institute of Southwest University, Chongqing, P.R. China
Minghua Li
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Yan Shi
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Ping Zhang
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Xian-Long Cheng
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Feng Wei
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China
Shuangcheng Ma
National Institutes for Food and Drug Control No. 2, Tiantan Xili, Dongcheng District, Beijing, P.R. China

ABSTRACT

Ophiocordyceps sinensis is a valuable traditional Chinese medicine with a high market price. In this study, a polymerase chain reaction–restriction fragment-length polymorphism (PCR-RFLP) method based on 2 enzymes was developed to distinguish O. sinensis from 6 common counterfeit species. To verify the applicability of this method, we experimentally tested O. sinensis organisms, tablet preparations made from O. sinensis, and cultured mycelia isolated from O. sinensis. To validate the results from this PCR-RFLP method, all real samples were identified by internal transcribed spacer sequencing. This is, to our knowledge, the first time the PCR-RFLP method has been applied to identify O. sinensis. The selection of 2 restrictive enzymes for identification dramatically improved the accuracy and efficiency of this method. It is the great advantage of this method that sampling from either of 2 parts of O. sinensis—the fruiting body or the caterpillar body—would not cause any difference in the final experimental results. Therefore, this method is not only feasible for testing crude drugs of O. sinensis but it is also useful when the crude drugs are broken down into powder or made into tablets, demonstrating the promising prospect of application in quality control.


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