Anti-infective properties of the melanin-glucan complex obtained from medicinal tinder bracket mushroom, Fomes fomentarius (L.: Fr.) Fr. (Aphyllophoromycetideae)

Int J Med Mushrooms. 2011;13(1):7-18. doi: 10.1615/intjmedmushr.v13.i1.20.


The goal of this investigation was to comparatively study the efficiency of traditionally used anti-infective drugs and biopolymer complexes originated from the medicinal mushroom Fomes fomentarius (L.:Fr.) Fr.: 1) water-soluble melanin-glucan complex (MGC; -80% melanins and -20% beta-glucans) and 2) insoluble chitin-glucan-melanin complex (ChGMC; -70% chitin, -20% beta-glucans, and -10% melanins). Infectious materials (Helicobacter pylori, Candida albicans, and Herpes vulgaris I and HIV-1(zmb) were used in pure cultures of in vitro and in vivo models on experimental animals. Comparison studies of fungal biopolymers and effective modern antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral drugs were used in in vitro models. The comparative clinical efficiency of ChGMC and of etiotropic pharmaceuticals in models of H. pylori, C. albicans, and H. vulgaris I infection contamination were studied. Using in vitro models, it was established that MGC completely depresses growth of C. albicans. MGC had an antimicrobial effect on H. pylori identical to erythromycin in all concentrations, and had a stronger action on this bacterium than other tested antibiotics. Tested MGC possesses simultaneously weak toxicity and high anti-HIV-1 activity in comparison with zidovudine (Retrovir). The obtained results show that CLUDDT therapy in Wistar rats with the application of ChGMC is, on average, 1.35-1.43 times as effective as a traditional one. Considering the absence of MGC and ChGMC toxic properties on blood cells even in very high concentrations, these complexes may be used as a source of biopolymers for the creation of essentially new agents for wide application in infectious pathology.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Infective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Anti-Infective Agents / therapeutic use
  • Biopolymers / pharmacology
  • Biopolymers / therapeutic use
  • Candida albicans / drug effects
  • Chitin / pharmacology
  • Chitin / therapeutic use
  • Complex Mixtures / pharmacology*
  • Complex Mixtures / therapeutic use
  • Coriolaceae / chemistry*
  • Female
  • HIV-1 / drug effects
  • Helicobacter pylori / drug effects
  • Herpesviridae / drug effects
  • Male
  • Melanins / pharmacology*
  • Melanins / therapeutic use
  • Models, Animal
  • Neutrophils / drug effects
  • Rats
  • Rats, Wistar
  • Time Factors
  • beta-Glucans / pharmacology*
  • beta-Glucans / therapeutic use


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Biopolymers
  • Complex Mixtures
  • Melanins
  • beta-Glucans
  • Chitin