Turkey Tail Mushrooms (Trametes Versicolor)
Trametes versicolor Mushroom Immune Therapy in Breast Cancer
Data from multiple epidemiologic and clinical studies on immune effects of conventional cancer treatment and the clinical benefits of polysaccharide immune therapy suggest that immune function has a role in breast cancer prevention. Immune therapy utilizing the polysaccharide constituents of Trametes versicolor (Tv) as concurrent adjuvant cancer therapy may be warranted as part of a comprehensive cancer treatment and secondary prevention strategy.
Data from epidemiologic studies of African American women, immune studies of the effect of chemotherapy drugs and radiotherapy on immune status, and the Asian literature oh the clinical benefit of polysaccharide immune therapy suggest that immune function has a role in primary and secondary prevention of breast cancer. High-priority research areas for breast cancer immunotherapy include trials of Tv and its polysaccharide peptide extract Krestin (PSK). Two types of trials are called for; first, we need clinical trials of Tv as a concurrent adjuvant therapy, along with chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and HER2/neu mAb therapy (trastuzumab). Second, in keeping with its potential role in secondary prevention and common use of Tv in Asian oncology, we need clinical trials of Tv immunotherapy after completion of standard cancer treatment.
Tramesan, a novel polysaccharide from Trametes versicolor. Structural characterization and biological effects
Mushrooms represent a formidable source of bioactive compounds. Some of these may be considered as biological response modifiers; these include compounds with a specific biological function: antibiotics (e.g. plectasin), immune system stimulator (e,g, lentinan), antitumor agents (e.g. krestin, PSK) and hypolipidemic agents (e.g. lovastatin) inter alia. In this study, we focused on the Chinese medicinal mushroom “yun zhi”, Trametes versicolor, traditionally used for (cit.) “replenish essence and qi (vital energy)”. Previous studies indicated the potential activity of extracts from culture filtrate of asexual mycelia of T. versicolor in controlling the growth and secondary metabolism (e.g. mycotoxins) of plant pathogenic fungi. The quest of active principles produced by T. versicolor, allowed us characterising an exo-polysaccharide released in its culture filtrate and naming it Tramesan. Herein we evaluate the biological activity of Tramesan in different organisms: plants, mammals and plant pathogenic fungi. We suggest that the bioactivity of Tramesan relies mostly on its ability to act as pro antioxidant molecule regardless the biological system on which it was applied.
In conclusion, we present for the first time the partial elucidation of the structure of Tramesan, a branched fungal glycan secreted into the environment by the lignin degrading fungus T. versicolor. This compound is able to act as a pro antioxidant in different organisms. By enhancing the “natural” antioxidant defences of the “hosts”, Tramesan could represent a useful tool for different challenges in different “contexts” in which limiting ROS production represents a solution for defusing harmful situations such as toxins release into foodstuff, necrotic lesions into plant crops or growth of cancer cells.
The lignicolous fungus Trametes versicolor (L.) Lloyd (1920): a promising natural source of antiradical and AChE inhibitory agents
This study aimed to determine antiradical (DPPH• and •OH) and acetylcholinesterase (AChE) inhibitory activities along with chemical composition of autochtonous fungal species Trametes versicolor (Serbia). A total of 38 phenolic compounds with notable presence of phenolic acids were identified using HPLC/MS-MS. Its water extract exhibited the highest antiradical activity against •OH (3.21 μg/mL), among the rest due to the presence of gallic, p-coumaric and caffeic acids. At the concentration of 100 μg/mL, the same extract displayed a profound AChE inhibitory activity (60.53%) in liquid, compared to donepezil (89.05%), a drug in clinical practice used as positive control. The flavonoids baicalein and quercetin may be responsible compounds for the AChE inhibitory activity observed. These findings have demonstrated considerable potential of T. versicolor water extract as a natural source of antioxidant(s) and/or AChE inhibitor(s) to be eventually used as drug-like compounds or food supplements in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease.
All the examined extracts exhibited a significant antiradical activity. Among them, the most potent was the H2O extract. Furthermore, the H2O extract showed the best AChE inhibitory activity. This is the first record of AChE inhibitory activity of the T. versicolor H2O extract: baicalein and quercetin were responsible for the inhibition of AChE activity. This extract actually contained 35 phenolic compounds. Among the rest, the identified compounds included daidzein (isoflavone molecule not presented in alcoholic extracts) and amentoflavone and catechin (presented in twice bigger concentrations, compared with the EtOH extract). Taken all together, the antiradical and AChE inhibitory activities displayed by phenols and flavonoids may be attributed also to polysaccharides. As a consequence, T. versicolor should be considered as an alternative source of bioactive substances to be used in the treatment of AD and other neurodegenerative diseases.