Studies show high potential of the mushroom factor in anticancer and antiparasitic treatment protocols

March
2017

Active components of AndoSan™ are extracted from three different mushroom species, and Agaricus subrufescens (aka Agaricus blazei Murill) is the dominating ingredient. As one of the newest medicinal mushrooms and a mushroom with many biological effects and active ingredients, Agaricus subrufescens is rapidly becoming a pivotal theme in mycological studies. Therefore, alongside conducting research on AndoSan™, ImmunoPharma is also taking vital part in promoting worldwide studies on Agaricus blazei Murill. The strain used in AndoSan™ is highly refined, nonetheless, much of the research concerning this medicinal mushroom is of great importance to ImmunoPharma in identifying and isolating specific active fractions of AndoSan™ and enabling further study and development possibilities.

The results of an anticancer study conducted in Japan were published in the International Journal of Oncology in 2016. During the course of this study an ergosterol derivative was isolated from Agaricus blazei Murill. This substance was termed ‘Agarol’ and was examined from the point of view of its tumoricidal properties using the method of flow cytometry and western blot analysis. After accomplishing detailed mechanistic studies, the authors found that Agarol induces caspase-independent apoptosis in human carcinoma cells through a mitochondrial pathway. The in vivo antineoplastic activity of Agarol was confirmed in a xenograft murine model. The outcome of this study indicates the potential use of Agarol as an anticancer agent due to a molecular mechanism by which this Agaricus blazei Murill derivative induces apoptosis in human carcinoma cells. (1)

In another study from 2016, the researchers found that compounds isolated from Agaricus blazei Murill represent a group of promising natural immunomodulators for use in the treatment of neoplasms. They have evaluated the serum biochemical profile of healthy and Ehrlich tumor-bearing mice treated with different extracts (total, supernatant, and polysaccharide) of this medicinal mushroom. After a three-week period of oral administering of Agaricus blazei Murill extracts to mice, blood samples were collected from them for the purpose of assessment of various tumor-specific markers. The presence of the tumor in the body is indicated by a significant increase in serum CK (creatine kinase) and AST (aspartate aminotransferase) activities and in the concentrations of total globulin and the gamma-globulin fraction, and by a decrease in the albumin and alpha2-globulin levels. The results of these tests showed that the polysaccharide extracts of Agaricus blazei Murill reduced the serum AST and ALT (alanine aminotransferase) activities, probably due to a hepatoprotective effect. Moreover, the authors detected that the polysaccharide and supernatant extracts inhibited the tumor-induced increase in gamma-globulin levels. A particularly important conclusion which may be derived from this study is that the supernatant and polysaccharide fractions of the extract of Agaricus blazei Murill have potential for use in complementary antineoplastic treatments. (2)

An experimental assessment of antiparasitic properties of Agaricus blazei Murill was performed in an animal study in 2016. Efficacies of three different treatment protocols of lambs infected with Haemonchus contortus nematode were compared: one group was treated with basidiocarp powder from Agaricus blazei Murill, the second group was wormed with trichlorfon, and the third, control group, did not receive anthelmintic. The administration of the medicinal mushroom significantly reduced the FEC (fecal egg counts per gram of feces), increased the serum concentrations of albumin to normal values and showed anthelmintic efficacies ranging from 28.6 to 54.2%. This therapy did not influence the blood parameters assessed, like for instance the erythrocyte count and hematocrit value, which remained within normal limits. The results of this study suggest that ingestion of Agaricus blazei Murill supplements may be a promising and complementary alternative in the treatment of infestation with these dangerous, blood-sucking Haemonchus contortus parasites. (3)

In conclusion, the above mentioned studies demonstrate possible points for further inquiry based on the AndoSan™ product and ways of establishing novel approaches to long-standing treatment protocols of human and animal ailments.

 

References:

  1. Shimizu, T., Kawai, J., Ouchi, K., Kikuchi, H., Osima, Y., & Hidemi, R. (2016). Agarol, an ergosterol derivative from Agaricus blazei, induces caspase-independent apoptosis in human cancer cells. International Journal of Oncology, 48, 1670-1678. http://dx.doi.org/10.3892/ijo.2016.3391
  2. Verçosa Junior, D., Faria de Oliveira, N. J., Robson Duarte, E., Almeida Bastos, G., Maia Soares, A. C., Dantas Cassali, G., Soto-Blanco, B., Martins Melo, M. (2016). Serum hepatic biochemistry and electrophoretic protein profile of healthy and Ehrlich tumor-bearing mice treated with extracts of Agaricus blazei Murill. Semina: Ciências Agrárias, vol. 37, n. 2, p. 763-772. State University of Londrina, Brazil. http://dx.doi.org/10.5433/1679-0359.2016v37n2p763
  3. Almeida Bastos, G.; Maia Soares, A. C., Vieira, T. M., de Souza Cândido, R. C., Morais-Costa, F., de Oliveira Vasconcelos, V., Faria Oliveira, N. J., Robson Duarte, E. (2016). Blood parameters of sheep with high infection of Haemonchus contortus and treated with “mushroom of the sun” (Agaricus blazei). Semina: Ciências Agrárias, vol. 37, n. 2, 807-817. State University of Londrina, Brazil. http://dx.doi.org/10.5433/1679-0359.2016v37n2p807