Cordyceps mitigates the adverse side effects of radiation. - GreenMedInfo Summary
Radiation mitigation effect of cultured mushroom fungus Hirsutella Sinensis (CorImmune) isolated from a Chinese/Tibetan herbal preparation -Cordyceps Sinensis.
Int J Radiat Biol. 2008 Feb;84(2):139-49. PMID: 18246482
PURPOSE: This study was carried out to test the hypothesis that the anti-oxidant and growth promoting properties of the cultured mushroom fungus Hirsutella sinensis (CorImmune) of Cordyceps sinensis mitigate radiation injury in mice. MATERIALS AND METHODS: BALB/c mice received total body irradiation (TBI) followed by treatment with CorImmune. The effect of CorImmune on lymphoid tissue, spleen and blood cells as well as survival and hematopoietic recovery was compared to normal saline treated controls. RESULTS: CorImmune administered beginning 2 hours after a lethal dose of TBI significantly improved survival: 55% in the CorImmune group vs. 0% in the saline control (p < 0.0001). It increased normal leukocyte levels in a dose-dependent fashion. Animals treated with sub-lethal TBI and monitored for blood leukocyte recovery exhibited a return to normal baseline 3 weeks after TBI injury. In contrast, only 50% returned to normal baseline in the saline control group (p < 0.01). CorImmune also stimulated immune lymphocyte proliferation by nearly two-fold in a (3)H-thymidine incorporation assay compared to controls (p < 0.01). CONCLUSIONS: CorImmune significantly increased animal survival after a lethal dose of radiation, accelerated leukocyte recovery and stimulated immune lymphocyte proliferation. We conclude that CorImmune is effective as a radiation mitigator when administered after radiation injury.