PsP, the protein-bound polysaccharide, extracted from a strain of Coriolus versicolor (Cov-1) by Professor Qing-yao Yang, has been proved to be effective against tumor both in animal experiments and in clinical patients. Previous results suggested that the antitumor effects of PsP were related to the potentiation of immunological responses, especially T-cell mediated immune responses of tumorbearing hosts. Since T-lymphocytes play an important role in immune response and T-cell deficiency existed in many diseases, the most noticeable one at present time is the acquired immune deficient syndrome (AIDS) which leads to the failure of T-cell functions and death. Until now there is no any
effective drug in curing this disease. It is of great interest to investigate if PsP can potentiate T-cell functions and restore the immune deficient conditions in tumor, AIDS and other viral infections. In this paper both in vivo and in vitro experiments were used to study PsP on: 1) immune organ weights, 2) antibody informations, 3) serum complement contents, 4) T lymphocyte proliferations, 5) interleukin-2 production, 6) delayed type hypersensitivity reaction, 7) phagocytic ability of reticulo-endothelial system and 8) protection of liver injuries from CCl4 intoxication.
When studied with modern clinical science, many medicinal mushrooms used in traditional Asian remedies have been found to possess powerful
biological compounds. Coriolus Versicolor (Trametes Versicolor) has been one of the most thoroughly researched mushrooms and is the subject of the most long-term human studies, particularly in the area of anti-cancer research.
28 late cases of malignancy of all pathologically proven were evaluated. Among them are one case of melanoma, two cases of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), twenty cases of gastro-intestinal cancers, three cases of bronchogenic carcinoma, one case each of primary hepatocellular carcinoma and multiple peritoneal malignancies of unknown origin respectively.
Trametes versicolor — formerly known as Coriolus versicolor and Polyporus versicolor — is an extremely common polypore mushroom which can be found throughout the world. Versicolor means ‘of several colours’ and it is true that this mushroom is found in a wide variety of different colours. T. versicolor is commonly called Turkey Tail in the United States because of its resemblance to the tail of the wild turkey. T. versicolor is recognized as a medicinal mushroom in Chinese medicine under the name yun zhi (simplified Chinese: ??, traditional Chinese: ??). In China and Japan T. versicolor is used as in immunoadjuvant therapy for cancer.
Mushrooms have traditionally been valued in Asia for their nutritional and medicinal qualities. The Coriolus versicolor or “Turkey Tail” mushroom has been investigated in numerous laboratory, animal and human clinical studies. Most of these studies have demonstrated that it does appear to have significant antimicrobial, antiviral and antitumor properties when used as a supplement to chemotherapy and/or radiotherapy. Human trials have included randomization, a process that decreases bias, but only one has used blinding, which would make them even more protected against biases.
The anti-cancer and immune stimulating properties of Coriolus versicolor have been attributed to two extracts from its cultured mycelium (thread-like extensions). These extracts are both protein-bound polysaccharides known as polysaccharide K (PSK) and polysaccharide-peptide (PSP). Hot water is required to extract these active components.
Mushrooms have been used for at least 5000 years for nutritional and medicinal purposes1,2. Anti-viral and anti-cancer effects have been demonstrated in more than 50 species through animal and in vitro studies. Six components of these mushrooms have been investigated for their activity in human cancers: the lentinan component of shiitake, schizophyllan, active hexose correlated compound (AHCC), maitake D-fraction and two components of Coriolus versicolor. According to the review by Kidd, lentinan and schizophyllan have limited oral bioavailability, and the AHCC and maitake D-fractions are still in the early stages of investigation, but the two Coriolus versicolor components have been extensively investigated and show promise2.
Coriolus Versicolor is the most well researched mushroom in the world. Coriolus versicolor (formerly known as Trametes versicolor, Polyporus versicolor) is a mushroom that grows on tree trunks. In Japan it is known as kawaratake (“mushroom by the river bank”), and in China it is called Yun Zhi or “cloud fungus.” This mushroom, which has long been treasured in the Far East is now accepted worldwide for its effectiveness and safety of use. It has been more intensively researched around the world than any other mushroom species.
Yun Zhi Polysaccharides (PSP) is a new type of BRM (Biological Response Modifier) extracted from the deep layer cultivated mycelia of Cov-1 strain of Yun Zhi (Coriolus versicolor). Its active ingredient is a protein bound polysaccharides used in the BRM therapy of tumors. Its characteristics and the general aspects of its research are briefly introduced in this paper