Alleviating Effect of Active Hexose Correlated Compound (AHCC) on Chemotherapy-Related Adverse Events in Patients with Unresectable Pancreatic Ductal Adenocarcinoma

Nutr Cancer. 2016;68(2):234-40. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2016.1134597. Epub 2016 Feb 4.


The present study was conducted to determine whether active hexose correlated compound (AHCC), a functional food extracted from cultured basidiomycetes, possesses the potential to attenuate adverse events in unresectable pancreas ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) patients receiving chemotherapy. Unresectable PDAC patients receiving gemcitabine treatment (GEM) as the first-line chemotherapy were prospectively divided into 2 groups according to AHCC intake (AHCC group, n = 35) or not (control group, n = 40). The patients in the AHCC group ingested 6.0 g of AHCC for 2 mo. Hematological and nonhematological toxicity was compared between the AHCC and control groups. The C-reactive protein (CRP) elevation and albumin decline of the AHCC group were significantly suppressed as compared to the control group during the GEM administration (P = 0.0012, P = 0.0007). Patients in the AHCC group had less frequency of taste disorder caused by GEM (17% vs. 56%, P = 0.0007). Frequency of grade 3 in the modified Glasgow Prognostic Score (mGPS) during chemotherapy was found significantly less in the AHCC group (14%) than the control group (53%, P = 0.0005). AHCC intake can be effective in reducing the adverse events associated with chemotherapy and may contribute to maintaining the QOL of patients with PDAC during GEM administration.

Publication types

  • Controlled Clinical Trial

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic / adverse effects*
  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic / therapeutic use
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / drug therapy*
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / mortality
  • Carcinoma, Pancreatic Ductal / surgery
  • Deoxycytidine / adverse effects
  • Deoxycytidine / analogs & derivatives*
  • Deoxycytidine / therapeutic use
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neutropenia / chemically induced
  • Neutropenia / prevention & control
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / drug therapy*
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / mortality
  • Pancreatic Neoplasms / surgery
  • Polysaccharides / chemistry
  • Polysaccharides / therapeutic use*
  • Survival Analysis
  • Treatment Outcome


  • Antimetabolites, Antineoplastic
  • Polysaccharides
  • Deoxycytidine
  • gemcitabine
  • Active Hexose Correlated Compound