Novel Medicinal Mushroom Blend as a Promising Supplement in Integrative Oncology: A Multi-Tiered Study using 4T1 Triple-Negative Mouse Breast Cancer Model

Int J Mol Sci. 2020 May 14;21(10):3479. doi: 10.3390/ijms21103479.


Although medicinal mushroom extracts have been proposed as promising anti-cancer agents, their precise impacts on metastatic breast cancer are still to be clarified. For this purpose, the present study exploited the effect of a novel medicinal mushroom blend, namely Micotherapy U-care, in a 4T1 triple-negative mouse breast cancer model. Mice were orally administered with Micotherapy U-care, consisting of a mixture of Agaricus blazei, Ophiocordyceps sinensis, Ganoderma lucidum, Grifola frondosa, and Lentinula edodes. The syngeneic tumor-bearing mice were generated by injecting 4T1 cells in both supplemented and non-supplemented mice. After sacrifice 25 days later, specific endpoints and pathological outcomes of the murine pulmonary tissue were evaluated. (i) Histopathological and ultrastructural analysis and (ii) immunohistochemical assessment of TGF-ß1, IL-6 and NOS2, COX2, SOD1 as markers of inflammation and oxidative stress were performed. The QoL was comparatively evaluated. Micotherapy U-care supplementation, starting before 4T1 injection and lasting until the end of the experiment, dramatically reduced the pulmonary metastases density, also triggering a decrease of fibrotic response, and reducing IL-6, NOS, and COX2 expression. SOD1 and TGF-ß1 results were also discussed. These findings support the valuable potential of Micotherapy U-care as adjuvant therapy in the critical management of triple-negative breast cancer.

Keywords: Agaricus blazei; Ganoderma lucidum; Grifola frondosa; Lentinula edodes; Ophiocordyceps sinensis; breast cancer; complementary medicine; in vivo; lung metastasis; mycotherapy.

MeSH terms

  • Agaricales / chemistry*
  • Animals
  • Cell Line, Tumor
  • Cell Proliferation / drug effects*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Disease Models, Animal
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Integrative Oncology*
  • Mice
  • Plants, Medicinal / chemistry
  • Triple Negative Breast Neoplasms / diet therapy*
  • Triple Negative Breast Neoplasms / pathology