Ganoderma lucidum exerts anti-tumor effects on ovarian cancer cells and enhances their sensitivity to cisplatin

Int J Oncol. 2011 May;38(5):1319-27. doi: 10.3892/ijo.2011.965. Epub 2011 Mar 8.


Ganoderma lucidum is a herbal mushroom known to have many health benefits, including the inhibition of tumor cell growth. However, the effect of Ganoderma lucidum on epithelial ovarian cancer (EOC), the most fatal gynecological malignancy, has not yet been reported. In this study, we determined whether Ganoderma lucidum regulates EOC cell activity. Using several cell lines derived from EOC, we found that Ganoderma lucidum strongly decreased cell numbers in a dose-dependent manner. Ganoderma lucidum also inhibited colony formation, cell migration and spheroid formation. In particular, Ganoderma lucidum was effective in inhibiting cell growth in both chemosensitive and chemoresistant cells and the treatment with Ganoderma lucidum significantly enhanced the effect of cisplatin on EOC cells. Furthermore, Ganoderma lucidum induced cell cycle arrest at the G2/M phase and also induced apoptosis by activating caspase 3. Finally, Ganoderma lucidum increased p53 but inhibited Akt expression. Taken together, these findings suggest that Ganoderma lucidum exerts multiple anti-tumor effects on ovarian cancer cells and can enhance the sensitivity of EOC cells to cisplatin.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Cell Cycle / drug effects
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects
  • Cell Survival / drug effects
  • Cisplatin / pharmacology*
  • Drug Synergism
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Ovarian Neoplasms / pathology
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt / antagonists & inhibitors
  • Reishi*


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt
  • Cisplatin