Maitake Pro4X has anti-cancer activity and prevents oncogenesis in BALBc mice

Cancer Med. 2016 Sep;5(9):2427-41. doi: 10.1002/cam4.744. Epub 2016 Jul 11.


The understanding of the molecular mechanisms of the immune tolerance induced by the tumoral microenvironment is fundamental to prevent cancer development or to treat cancer patients using immunotherapy. Actually, there are investigations about "addressed-drugs" against cancer cells without affecting normal cells. It could be ideal to find selective and specific compounds that only recognize and destroy tumor cells without damaging the host normal cells. For thousands of years, mushrooms have been used for medicinal purposes because of their curative properties. D-Fraction, an extract of Maitake (from the edible Grifola frondosa mushroom), rich in β-glucans, exert notable effects in the immune system. Until now, some published articles suggest that Maitake D-Fraction could have anti-tumoral activity, prevent oncogenesis and metastasis in some tumor types. However, there are no clear data about Maitake D-Fraction action on breast cancer prevention and its exact molecular mechanisms are not yet elucidated. The experiments were performed employing 25 female BALBc mice that were treated with and without Maitake D-Fraction Pro4X or Maitake Standard for 15 days by daily intraperitoneal injection. After treatment period, all mice were implanted with murine tumor cells LM3 to induce mammary tumorigenesis. Animals were checked weekly and killed after 46 days of LM3 transplant; percentage of cancer prevention, rate of tumor growing, and overall survival were determined. Under dissection, the internal organs were evaluated histologically and genetically by RT-PCR. We found that 5 mg/kg per day of Maitake D-Fraction Pro4X, administered dairy during 15 days to BALBc mice was able to block more than 60% breast cancer development. However, Maitake Standard prevents oncogenesis in 26% to respect control. In this work, we found that Maitake D-Fraction Pro4X, administered to BALBc mice, prevents breast carcinogenesis, block tumor invasiveness, reduce angiogenesis, and increase overall survival.

Keywords: Breast cancer; Maitake Pro4X; cancer prevention; carcinogenesis.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Biological Products / pharmacology*
  • Breast Neoplasms / drug therapy
  • Breast Neoplasms / metabolism
  • Breast Neoplasms / pathology
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Transformation, Neoplastic / drug effects*
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic / drug effects
  • Grifola / chemistry*
  • Mice
  • Mortality
  • Necrosis
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / drug therapy
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / metabolism
  • Neovascularization, Pathologic / pathology
  • Phenotype
  • Xenograft Model Antitumor Assays


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • Biological Products