Ganoderma lucidum (Fr.) P. Karst enhances activities of heart mitochondrial enzymes and respiratory chain complexes in the aged rat

Biogerontology. 2009 Oct;10(5):627-36. doi: 10.1007/s10522-008-9208-9. Epub 2009 Jan 4.


Aging is associated with increased oxidative damage at multiple cellular levels, decline in cellular energy production and enhanced free radical status. The effect of the medicinal mushroom, Ganoderma lucidum on the activities of tricarboxylic acid (Krebs) cycle enzymes and mitochondrial complexes I-IV of the electron transport chain in aged rats were investigated. The activity of Krebs cycle enzymes, isocitrate dehydrogenase, alpha-ketoglutarate dehydrogenase, succinate dehydrogenase, and malate dehydrogenase as well as mitochondrial complexes I, II, III, and IV were determined in heart of aged male Wistar rats orally administrated with 70% ethanolic extract (50 and 250 mg/kg) of G. lucidum. DL-alpha-lipoic acid (100 mg/kg) was taken as the positive control. Administration of the G. lucidum, once daily for 15 days, was significantly (P < 0.05) effective to enhance the Krebs cycle dehydrogenases, and mitochondrial electron transport chain complex IV activities in aged rats. The profound activity of the extract can be correlated to the significant antioxidant property of G. lucidum. The results of the study revealed that G. lucidum is effective to ameliorate the age associated decline of cellular energy status.

MeSH terms

  • Aging / physiology*
  • Animals
  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal / pharmacology*
  • Electron Transport / drug effects*
  • Electron Transport Chain Complex Proteins / metabolism*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mitochondria, Heart* / drug effects
  • Mitochondria, Heart* / enzymology
  • Mitochondria, Heart* / metabolism
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Reishi / chemistry*


  • Drugs, Chinese Herbal
  • Electron Transport Chain Complex Proteins