Anti-cancer effect and structural characterization of endo-polysaccharide from cultivated mycelia of Inonotus obliquus

Life Sci. 2006 May 30;79(1):72-80. doi: 10.1016/j.lfs.2005.12.047. Epub 2006 Feb 3.


The endo-polysaccharide extracted from mycelia of Inonotus obliquus (Pers.:Fr.) Pil. (Hymenochaetaceae) is a specific activator of B cells and macrophages. However, the in vivo anti-cancer effects and the chemical structure of the endo-polysaccharide are unknown. We purified the endo-polysaccharide, investigated its anti-cancer effects via in vitro and in vivo assays, and performed a structural characterization. The endo-polysaccharide was extracted from I. obliquus mycelia cultivated in a 300-l pilot fermenter, followed by hot water extraction and ethanol precipitation. Purification was achieved by DEAE-cellulose ion-exchange chromatography and gel-permeation chromatography. Chemical analysis revealed that the purified endo-polysaccharide is an alpha-linked fucoglucomannan with a molecular weight of approximately 1,000 kDa. The anti-cancer activities of the endo-polysaccharide against various types of tumor cells were determined. No direct toxicity against either cancer or normal cells was observed. Intraperitoneal administration of the endo-polysaccharide significantly prolonged the survival rate of B16F10-implanted mice, resulting in a 4.07-fold increase in the survival rate at a dose of 30 mg/kg/day. After 60 days of feeding, approximately 67% of the initial number of mice survived with no tumor incidence based on macroscopic examination. These results indicate that the anti-cancer effect of endo-polysaccharide is not directly tumorcidal but rather is immuno-stimulating.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / chemistry
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / isolation & purification
  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic / pharmacology*
  • Antibody Formation / immunology
  • B-Lymphocytes / immunology
  • Basidiomycota / chemistry*
  • Basidiomycota / genetics
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Cell Line
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Chromatography, Gel
  • Chromatography, Ion Exchange
  • Culture Media
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Macrophages / drug effects
  • Macrophages / metabolism
  • Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy
  • Mice
  • Molecular Weight
  • Mycelium / chemistry*
  • Neoplasm Transplantation
  • Nitric Oxide / biosynthesis
  • Polysaccharides / chemistry
  • Polysaccharides / isolation & purification
  • Polysaccharides / pharmacology*
  • Survival Analysis


  • Antibiotics, Antineoplastic
  • Culture Media
  • Polysaccharides
  • Nitric Oxide