Effect of polysaccharide-peptide (PSP), an extract from yun-zhi, on chemotherapy-induced cytopenias.

Zhou LQ, Koo WH, Ang PT.

Department of Medical Oncology, Singapore General Hospital, Singapore.


Polysaccharide-peptide (PSP) is a protein-bound complex carbohydrate derived from mycelia extract of Chinese fungus coriolus versicolor, or better known as Yun-Zhi. It has been shown to inhibit growth of cultured tumour cells, and it prevents cytotoxic-induced bone marrow suppression. An animal study was conducted with 24 Wistar rats to verify the myeloprotective effect of PSP. The rats were divided into two equal groups: group A (given cyclophosphamide [CTX]) and group B (given PSP and CTX). The body weights were similar in both groups of rats. In phase 1, all rats were given intravenous CTX 75 mg/kg. In addition, B rats received PSP 20 mg/day orally from 7 days before CTX to 14 days after CTX. Phase 2 was carried out two weeks after full recovery from CTX-induced cytopenia. The CTX was decreased to 60 mg/kg, and the group B rats received an increased dose of PSP 1.2 g/day for the same 21 days. In both phases, the CTX was well tolerated. Nadir white blood cell count was reached on day 4 and all counts recovered by day 10. There was no difference in absolute neutrophil, lymphocyte and platelet counts between groups A and B. We concluded that oral PSP did not prevent CTX-induced cytopenia in rats.

PMID: 8779535 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]


Morphological study of cytotoxicity produced by PSK-induced polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMNs) and Nocardia rubra cell wall skeleton.

Kata H, Inoue M, Mukai S, Kawahito Y, Yoshida T, Asai K, Kimura S, Hashiramoto A, Yamamura Y, Sano H, Sugino S, Kondo M.

First Department of Internal Medicine, Kyoto Prefectural University of Medicine, Japan.


The morphologic changes in PMNs induced by an i.p. injection of PSK, a polysaccharide from the mycelia of Coriolus versicolor, and tumor cells undergoing cell death, were evaluated by immunohistochemical staining and electron microscopy. Male C3H/He mice, 8-10 -weeks old, received an i.p. injection of 125 mg/kg of PSK. Their PMNs were obtained 6 h after the PSK injection by peritoneal lavage. N-CWS (Nocardia rubra cell wall skeleton) was added at the start of the chromium release assay using the MM46 mammary carcinoma cell line, which is syngeneic to C3H/He mice, as target cells. During the cytotoxic assay, the cells were fixed at various time points. The MM46 cells expressed ICAM-1 while the PMNs expressed both ICAM-1 and LFA-1 as determined by immunohistochemical staining and immunoelectron microscopy using anti-ICAM-1 and anti-LFA-1 antibodies. PMNs with ruffle-like microvilli adhered to the MM46 tumor cells 30 min after the addition of N-CWS. Immunoelectron microscopic findings suggested that the adhesion molecules were LFA-1 on the PMNs and ICAM-1 on the MM46 tumor cells, but cell fusion between the PMNs and tumor cells was not observed. The MM46 tumor cells gradually lost their microvilli, which showed cell damage, and died 6-7 h after the addition of the N-CWS. This time course of tumor cell death is compatible with the results of the cytotoxic assay. Pretreatment of PMNs by anti-LFA-1 antibody suppressed 1% lysis of MM46 tumor cells from 90% to 10% (p < 0.01). These data suggest that adhesion molecule on the surface of PMNs such as LFA-1 might play an important role on signal transduction of these PMNs cytotoxic function in this experimental system.

PMID: 9012542 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]


Restorative effect of Coriolus versicolor polysaccharides against gamma-irradiation-induced spleen injury in mice.

Lin IH, Hau DM, Chang YH.

Institute of Radiation Biology, National Tsing-Hua University, Taiwan, China.


AIM: To study the restorative effect of Coriolus versicolor polysaccharides (CVP) on spleen injury induced by gamma-ray irradiation in mice.

METHODS: ICR Male mice, 6-8 wk old, were divided at random into 3 groups: A) normal control; B) irradiated with 1 Gy; and C) after 1 Gy irradiation, given CVP 60 mg.kg-1 (ig) daily for 10 d continuously. Body weight (BW), spleen weight (SW), relative SW (RSW), DNA synthesis of splenocytes (DNA-SS), and relative DNA-SS were measured on d 5, 12, 19, 26, and 33 after irradiation.

RESULTS: SW, RSW, DNA-SS, and relative DNA-SS decreased after irradiation. CVP enhanced the recovery of SW, RSW, DNA-SS, and relative DNA-SS inhibited by irradiation.

CONCLUSION: CVP has the restorative effect against spleen injury induced by gamma-ray irradiation in mice.

PMID: 9772653 [PubMed – indexed for MEDLINE]