Beta glucan is effective in prolonging survival of liver cancer patients. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Clinical efficacy of superfine dispersed lentinan (beta-1,3-glucan) in patients with hepatocellular carcinoma.
Hepatogastroenterology. 2009 Mar-Apr;56(90):437-41. PMID: 19579616
BACKGROUND/AIMS: Recently, complementary alternative medicine is actively performed for cancer therapy. We investigated the effectiveness of supplementary food containing superfine dispersed lentinan (beta-1,3-glucan) in patients with unresectable or recurrent hepatocellular carcinoma in a multi-center study. METHODOLOGY: Peripheral blood was collected prior to the test food ingestion and was incubated with fluorescein-labeled lentinan. The rates of lentinan-binding CD14+ monocytes were determined by flow cytometry. Patient survival times were followed up for 3 years. RESULTS: Thirty-six patients were eligible among 40 enrolled patients. Median survival time of eligible patients was 13.6 months (95% confidence interval, 8.7-18.9 months). Survival times of patients who ingested test food for a mean period of 47 weeks (range, 26 to 145 weeks) were significantly longer than that of patients who ingested for 7 to 12 weeks (p < 0.05). The rates of lentinan-binding cells in CD14+ monocytes showed individual variations (0.1-19.7%; Median, 1.6%). Survival times (median survival time, 16.3 months) of lentinan-high-binding group were significantly longer than those (median survival time, 12.5 months) of lentinan-low-binding group (p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: A superfine dispersed lentinan-containing supplementary food is effective for hepatocellular carcinoma patients' survival. Long-time ingestion is preferable. Assessment of lentinan-binding CD14+ monocytes is a promising prognostic predictor.