Extracts of Phellinus linteus, bamboo (Sasa senanensis) leaf and chaga mushroom (Inonotus obliquus) exhibit antitumor activity through activating innate immunity

Jun Fang*, Shanghui Gao, Rayhanul Islam, Yuji Teramoto, Hiroshi Maeda*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)
30 Downloads (Pure)


Natural products have attracted great interest for some time as alternative methods against cancers by fulfilling immunomodulating properties. In this study, we investigated the activity of the extract mixture of Phellinus linteus, fresh leaves of Kumaizasa bamboo and Chaga mushroom which we called MeshimaMax, for cancer prevention and treatment by using different solid tumor models. In the implanted mouse sarcoma S180 tumor, MeshimaMax treatment significantly inhibited tumor growth when it was applied at the early stage of tumor inoculation. The effect was further confirmed by using carcinogen induced tumors, i.e., azoxymethane (AOM)/dextran sulfate sodium (DSS) induced mouse colon cancer and 7,12-dimethylbenz anthracene (DMBA) induced rat breast cancer. In both cases the occurrences of tumors were remarkably suppressed by administration of MeshimaMax. More importantly, when MeshimaMax was combined with an anticancer chemotherapeutic drug, the therapeutic effect was remarkably improved. In vitro studies showed that when MeshimaMax was applied to mouse macrophage RAW264.7 cells the phagocytosis of macrophages was significantly activated, which was evaluated by using living yeast cells as well as synthetic nanoparticles. A cytotoxicity assay showed the 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) was higher than 1 mg/mL and normal cells were 2–3 times more tolerant to MeshimaMax than cancer cells. These findings suggest the potential application of MeshimaMax for cancer prevention and as supplement regimen for anticancer chemotherapy, probably functioning through activation of innate immunity, which may benefit cancer patients as an alternative supplement.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2279
Number of pages12
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding: This research was funded by ACSYS UN Co., Ltd. and Biodynamics Research Foundation, Kumamoto, Japan.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.


  • Bamboo leaf
  • Cancer prevention
  • Chaga mushroom
  • Immunostimulation
  • Innate immunity
  • Kumaizasa
  • Macrophage
  • Phellinus linteus
  • Supplement

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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