Lentinula edodes-derived polysaccharide enhances systemic and mucosal immunity by spatial modulation of intestinal gene expression in mice

Food Funct. 2015 Jun;6(6):2068-80. doi: 10.1039/c4fo01192a.


Mushroom polysaccharides have been reported to possess significant biological activities. However, their molecular mechanisms are not fully elucidated. In this study, the immunostimulating activity of a newly purified heteropolysaccharide L2 from Lentinula edodes is evaluated in Caco-2 cells and a Caco-2/RAW264.7 co-culture system, as well as in mice. Subsequently, the customized RT-PCR array containing 112 genes is employed to investigate the effects of L2 on gene expressions in the small intestine, cecum and colon. The results show that L2 significantly enhances immune responses by differentially affecting the gene expressions of small intestine, cecum and colon, in which 55, 26 and 25 genes are markedly changed, respectively. In particular, 3 core regulation networks are identified for various parts of gut. These data demonstrate the potential of L2 as a potent immune stimulator and for the first time provide a detailed landscape of tissue-specific gene expressions and core regulation networks in response to L. edodes-derived heteropolysaccharide treatment.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Caco-2 Cells
  • Coculture Techniques
  • Cytokines / analysis
  • Cytokines / blood
  • Cytokines / metabolism
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / metabolism
  • Enterocytes / immunology
  • Enterocytes / metabolism*
  • Fruiting Bodies, Fungal / chemistry
  • Functional Food / analysis*
  • Fungal Polysaccharides / metabolism*
  • Gene Expression Regulation
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Innate*
  • Immunity, Mucosal*
  • Intestinal Mucosa / immunology
  • Intestinal Mucosa / metabolism
  • Intestines / immunology
  • Macrophages / immunology
  • Macrophages / metabolism*
  • Male
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred C57BL
  • RAW 264.7 Cells
  • Shiitake Mushrooms / chemistry*
  • Specific Pathogen-Free Organisms


  • Cytokines
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Fungal Polysaccharides