Since Agaricus blazei Murill (AbM) extract reduced specific IgE and ameliorated a skewed Th1/Th2 balance in a mouse allergy model, it was tested in blood donors with self-reported, IgE-positive, birch pollen allergy and/or asthma. Sixty recruited donors were randomized in a placebo-controlled, double-blinded study with pre-seasonal, 7-week, oral supplementation with the AbM-based extract AndosanTM. Before and after the pollen season, questionnaires were answered for allergic rhino-conjunctivitis, asthma, and medication; serum IgE was measured, and Bet v 1-induced basophil activation was determined by CD63 expression. The reported general allergy and asthma symptoms and medication were significantly reduced in the AbM compared to the placebo group during pollen season. During the season, there was significant reduction in specific IgE anti-Bet v 1 and anti-t3 (birch pollen extract) levels in the AbM compared with the placebo group. While the maximal allergen concentrations needed for eliciting basophil activation before the season, changed significantly in the placebo group to lower concentrations (i.e., enhanced sensitization) after the season, these concentrations remained similar in the AndosanTM AbM extract group. Hence, the prophylactic effect of oral supplementation before the season with the AbM-based AndosanTM extract on aeroallergen-induced allergy was associated with reduced specific IgE levels during the season and basophils becoming less sensitive to allergen activation.
Keywords: Agaricus blazei mushroom; AndosanTM; asthma; basophil activation; birch pollen allergy; clinical trial.