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International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms
IF: 1.211 5-Year IF: 1.394 SJR: 0.433 SNIP: 0.661 CiteScore™: 1.38

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

International Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms

DOI: 10.1615/IntJMedMushrooms.2017024537
pages 861-877

The Efficacy and Toxicity of Using the Lingzhi or Reishi Medicinal Mushroom, Ganoderma lucidum (Agaricomycetes), and Its Products in Chemotherapy (Review)

Martina Cizmarikova
Department of Pharmacology, Medical Faculty, Pavol Jozef Safarik University, Trieda SNP 1, 040 11 Kosice, Slovakia

ABSTRACT

Around the world, cancer patients often combine conventional anticancer treatment with complementary alternative medicines derived from natural sources such as fungi and mushrooms, including the popular lingzhi or reishi medicinal mushroom Ganoderma lucidum. Many studies to date have described the anticancer properties of G. lucidum, which are attributed to its major pharmacologically bioactive compounds, such as terpenoids and polysaccharides. Moreover, several scientific observations have suggested a potential beneficial therapeutic strategy using G. lucidum in combination with chemotherapeutic agents to improve therapeutic outcome. However, to my knowledge, no systematic review has been conducted in this area. Therefore, this review summarizes the current knowledge on G. lucidum or its individual components in relation to chemotherapeutic efficacy, ability to reverse multidrug resistance, and chemotherapeutic toxicity.