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Ganoderma lucidum: A promising anti-inflammatory medicinal plant



Inflammation is a complex process and part of the host immune defense against invading microorganism or trauma. Over production of some pro-inflammatory mediators can lead to chronic diseases of the inflammatory origin. Medicinal Plants which are used as anti-inflammatory agents, mainly act affecting various stages of the process of inflammation. In general they can inhibit formation of a wide of mediators such as cytokines by immune cells to prevent the inflammatory reaction cascade from starting. The use of most of the medicinal plants in treatment of chronic disease of the inflammatory origin is based on clinical and pharmacological trials. Meanwhile, the use of most of them is based on their longstanding traditional use in folk medicine. In this review, we report some of anti-inflammatory effects of G. lucidum as an ancient Chinese herbal medicine.
Journal of HerbMed Pharmacology
Journal homepage:
J HerbMed Pharmacol. 2014; 3(1): 67-68.
Ganoderma lucidum: A promising anti-inammatory
medicinal plant
*Corresponding author: Kazem Ahmadi, Email:,
Inflammation is an unpleasant process familiar to
everyone. It occurs in response to a wide range of sunburn,
wounds, trauma, infection and auto immune conditions.
Inflammation is characterized by four physical clear signs
of warmth, redness, pain and swelling (1-3). Indeed, an
immunological mechanism which plays an important
role in the pathogenesis of diseases of the inflammatory
origin, is related to activation and interactions of different
immune cells, resulting to over production of mediators
(4). Therefore, the main gold in treatment with medicinal
plant is looking for those of them with inhibitory effect
on the production of pro-inflammatory mediators
by immune cells.
Many plants have been known with inhibitory effects on
inflammation and anti-arthritic properties. In general,
medicinal plants as whole reduces much of inflammation
(5,6). Ganoderma lucidum (G. lucidum), a traditional
Chinese medicinal herb, has been studied in many
area during last two decades. Different compounds
of G. lucidum extracts exert variable immunological
effects. Selenium nano-particles decorated by sulfated
Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharides has been shown
to inhibit LPS-stimulated nitric oxide (NO) production
by macrophages and down regulated mRNA gene
expressions of pro-inflammatory cytokines including
inducible NO synthase (iNOS), interleukin-1(IL-1) and
TNF-α in a dose dependent manner. On the other hand,
the anti-inflammatory cytokine IL-10 has been markedly
increased under Selenium nano-particles treatment (7,8).
Sajjad Ahmadi-Renani1, Mahdi Fasihi-Ramandi2, Kazem Ahmadi2*
1Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
2Molecular Biology Research Center, Baqiyatallah University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran
Inflammation is a complex process and part of the host immune defense against invading micro-
organism or trauma. Over production of some pro-inflammatory mediators can lead to chronic
disea ses of the inf lammatory orig in. Medicinal Pla nts which are used as a nti-infla mmatory agents,
mainly act affecting various stages of the process of inf lammation. In general they can inhibit
formation of a wide of mediators such as cytokines by immune cells to prevent the inf lammatory
reaction cascade from starting. The use of most of the medicinal plants in treatment of chronic
disease of the inflammatory origin is based on clinical and pharmacological trials. Meanwhile, the
use of most of them is based on their longstanding traditional use in folk medicine. In this review,
we report some of anti-inflammatory effects of G. lucidum as an ancient Chinese herbal medicine.
Ganoderma lucidum
Anti-inammatory medicinal plant
Article History:
Received: 1 March 2014
Accepted: 19 March 2014
ePublished: 1 June 2014
Article Type:
Letter to Editor
Implication for health policy/practice/research/medical education:
Ganoderma lucidum seems to be useful as an anti-inammatory medicinal plant. erefore, more preclinical and clinical studies
are recommended to elucidate its benecial and risk eects in dierent conditions.
Please cite this paper as: Ahmadi-Renani S, Fasihi-Ramandi M, Ahmadi K. Ganoderma lucidum: A promising anti-
inammatory medicinal plant. J HerbMed Pharmacol. 2014; 3(1): 67-68.
Ahmadi-Renani S et al.
Journal of HerbMed Pharmacology, Volume 3, Number 1, June 2014
In this regard some scientist believed that polysaccharides
compounds of G. lucidum is responsible for anti-
inflammatory and anti-tumor activities (9). There is also
reports showing that polysaccharide from G. lucidum can
increase the release of tumor necrosis factor and interferon
(IFN) from macrophages and lymphocytes (10). Another
compound named water-insoluble B 1,3 D-glucan
extracted from the fruit body of G. lucidum has been
shown to significantly down regulate the inducible nitric
oxide synthetase and TNF-α mRNA gene expression (11).
In addition to anti-iflammatory effects G. lucidum, there
are some reports demonstrating its adjuant effects. Chan
et al. (12) reported that G. lucidum enhanced maturation
of DC by upregulating CD40, CD80, and CD86 markers.
Lin et al. (13), also showed that costimulatory molecules
CD40, CD54, CD80, and CD86 of human dendritic cells
increased in response to G. lucidum. In support of above
mentioned adjuvant effect of G. lucidum, Ahmadi and
Riazipour (14), demonstrated the up expression of CD40/
CD86 on peripheral blood monocytes.
In conclusion, G. lucidum seems to be useful as an anti-
inflammatory medicinal plant. Therefore, more preclinical
and clinical studies are recommended to more elucidate
its beneficial and risk effects in different conditions.
Authors’ contributions
All the authors wrote the manuscript equally.
Conflict of interests
The authors declared no competing interests.
Ethical considerations
Ethical issues (including plagiarism, misconduct,
data fabrication, falsification, double publication or
submission, redundancy) have been completely observed
by the authors.
1. Ikeda Y, Murakami A, Ohigashi H. Ursolic acid: an
anti- and pro-inflammatory triterpenoid. Mol Nutr
Food Res 2008;52:26–42.
2. Choy EHS, Panayi GS. Cytokine Pathways and Joint
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et al. Correlation study of auto-immune antibodies
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Y. Avena rhealba inhibits arachidonic acid cascade,
CPLA2 and COX expression in human keratinocytes.
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lucidum extract protects dopaminergic neurons
through inhibiting the production of inflammatory
mediators by activated microglial. Sheng Li Xue Bao
8. Wang J, Zhang Y, Yuan Y, Yue T. Immunomodulatory
of Selenium nano-particles decorated by sulfated
Ganoderma Lucidum polysaccharides. Food Chem
Toxicol 2014;14:120-3.
9. Joseph S, Sabulal B, George V, Antony KR, Janardhanan
KK. Antitumor and anti-inflammatory activities of
polysaccharides isolated from Ganoderma lucidum.
Acta Pharm 2011; 61(3):335-42.
10. Lee SS, Wei YH, Chen CF, Wang SY, Chen KY. Anti
tumor effects of Ganoderma lucidum . J Clin Med
1995; 6:1-12.
11. Wang J, Yuan Y, Yue T. Immunostimulatory activities
of B-d-glucan from ganoderma lucidum. Carbohydr
Polym 2014; 102: 47-54.
12. Chan WK, Lam DT, Law HK, Wong WT, Koo MW, Lau
AS, et al. Ganoderma lucidum mycelium and spore
extracts as natural adjuvants for immunotherapy. J
Altern Complement Med 2005;11:1047-57.
13. Lin YL, Lee SS, Hou SM, Chiang BL. Polysaccharide
purified from Ganoderma lucidum induces gene
expression changes in human dendritic cells and
promotes T helper 1 immune response in BALB/c
Mice. Mol Pharmacol 2006;70:637–44.
14. Ahmadi K, Riazipour M. Ganoderma lucidum
induces the expression of CD40/CD86 on peripheral
B lood monocytes. Iran J Immunol 2009; 6(2): 87-91.
ResearchGate has not been able to resolve any citations for this publication.
Full-text available
Antitumor and anti-inflammatory activities of polysaccharides isolated from Ganoderma lucidum In this study, polysaccharides were isolated from Ganoderma lucidum (Polyporaceae) and their antitumor and anti-inflammatory activities were investigated using in vivo models. Potential antitumor activity was shown by G. lucidum polysaccharides (GLP) against solid tumor induced by Ehrlich's ascites carcinoma cells. GLP at 100 mg kg ⁻¹ body mass showed 80.8 and 77.6 % reduction in tumour volume and tumour mass, respectively, when administered 24 h after tumour implantation. Again, GLP at the same dose but when administered prior to tumour inoculation, showed 79.5 and 81.2 % inhibition of tumour volume and tumour mass, respectively. GLP showed significant dose-dependent activity in carrageenean-induced (acute) and formalin-induced (chronic) inflammation assays. At 100 mg kg ⁻¹ , GLP exhibited 57.6 and 58.2 % inhibition in carrageenean-induced and formalin-induced assays, respectively.
Full-text available
The major immuno-modulating effects of Ganoderma lucidum include mitogenicity and activation of immune effector cells such as T cells, macrophages and natural killer cells resulting in the production of cytokines. The purpose of this study was to evaluate the expression of CD40 and CD80 by G. lucidum-treated human peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Monocytes were isolated and incubated at 37 C and 5% CO2 for 24 h and 48 h in the presence or absence of different concentrations of G. lucidum. Cells were then incubated with labelled monoclonal antibodies against CD14, CD40 and B7-1(CD80) molecules utilizing standard protocols, and analyzed by flow cytometry. The results showed that incubation of monocytes with G. lucidum led to marked enhancement of CD40 and B7-1 expression in a dose- and time- dependent manner (p<0.001). G. lucidum was more effective in enhancing the expression of CD80 and CD40 molecules of cells obtained from females than male donors (p<0.001). G. lucidum enhanced the expression of CD40 and CD80 molecules on peripheral blood monocytic cells derived from both sexes in a dose-dependent manner, with a preferential higher effect on cells obtained from female donors.
A water-insoluble β-(1→3)-d-glucan (GLPs) with few branches at C-6 and C-2 positions was extracted from the fruit body of Ganoderma Lucidum by 1 M NaOH at 40 °C. By the striking inhibition of NO and TNF-α production, GLPs showed significant anti-inflammation activity against LPS induced Raw 264.7 cells. Results of RT-PCR revealed the down regulation of iNOS and TNF-α mRNA gene expression. GLPs severely inhibited the phosphorylation of IκBα and JNK1/2, while the ERK1/2 and p38 were not apparently affected by GLPs. The neutralizing antibodies against dectin-1 and TLR-4, respectively, did not affect GLPs-mediated inhibition of NO production. But neutralizing of TLR2 affected the inhibition of NO. All of these results revealed that GLPs can inhibit the inflammation of Raw 264.7 cell induced by LPS at least partially attributed to the blocking of NF-κB and JNK MAPK, and TLR2 plays a major role in GLPs anti-inflammation activity.
To investigate the correlation between anto-immune antibodies and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) patients of Shen deficiency syndrome (SDS), thus providing clinical evidence for further researches on molecular biological mechanisms of RA patients of SDS. Totally 451 RA patients were assigned to the SDS group and the non-SDS group. Their general conditions (including gender, age, duration, and age of onset), C reactive protein (CRP), erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR), platelet (PLT), disease activities (DAS28), auto-antibodies [rheumatoid factor (RF), anti-CCP antibodies, anti-nuclear antibody (ANA)] were compared between the two groups. (1) The scores for EST, PLT, and DAS28 were obviously higher in the SDS group than in the non-SDS group (P < 0.05, P <0. 01). (2) The level of average RF was (697.32 +/-1 061.38 IU/mL) in the SDS group, higher than that in the non-SDS group (439.91 +/- 672.24 IU/mL, P <0.01). There was no statistical difference in anti-CCP antibody between the two groups (P >0.05).(3) The ANA poesitive rate of RA patients was 29. 63% (120/405). It was 37.19% (74/199) in RA patients of SDS and 22. 33% (46/206) in RA patients of non-SDS, showing statistical difference between the two groups (P <0.01). (4) The odds ratio for high level RF positive and ANA positive was 1. 574 and 2. 059 folds in RA patients of SDS as high as that in RA patients of non-SDS. RA patients of SDS would have higher risk of having auto-immune antibodies, fastened development, more worsen joint damage, and more poor prognosis. Its mechanisms might be closely associated with autoimmune tolerance.
Medicinal plants are traditionally used in folk medicine as natural healing remedies with therapeutic effects such as prevention of cardiovascular diseases, inflammation disorders, or reducing the risk of cancer. In addition, pharmacological industry utilizes medicinal plants due to the presence of active chemical substances as agents for drug synthesis. They are valuable also for food and cosmetic industry as additives, due to their preservative effects because of the presence of antioxidants and antimicrobial constituents. To commonly used medicinal plants with antioxidant activity known worldwide belong plants from several families, especially Lamiaceae (rosemary, sage, oregano, marjoram, basil, thyme, mints, balm), Apiaceae (cumin, fennel, caraway), and Zingiberaceae (turmeric, ginger). The antioxidant properties of medicinal plants depend on the plant, its variety, environmental conditions, climatic and seasonal variations, geographical regions of growth, degree of ripeness, growing practices, and many other factors such as postharvest treatment and processing. In addition, composition and concentration of present antioxidants, such as phenolic compounds, are related to antioxidant effect. For appropriate determination of antioxidant capacity, the extraction technique, its conditions, solvent used, and particular assay methodology are important.
The identification of substances that can promote the resolution of inflammation in a way that is homeostatic, modulatory, efficient, and well-tolerated by the body is of fundamental importance. Traditional medicines have long provided front-line pharmacotherapy for many millions of people worldwide. Medicinal extracts are a rich source of therapeutic leads for the pharmaceutical industry. The use of medicinal plant therapies to treat chronic illness, including rheumatoid arthritis (RA) and inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), is thus widespread and on the rise.The aim of this review is to present recent progress in clinical anti-inflammatory studies of plant extracts and compound leads such as green tea polyphenols, curcumin, resveratrol, boswellic acid, and cucurbitacins, among others, against chronic inflammatory diseases, mainly RA and IBD. In this context, the present paper also highlights the most promising experimental data on those plant extracts and pure compounds active in animal models of the aforementioned diseases.
Abundant evidence has suggested that neuroinflammation participates in the pathogenesis of Parkinson's disease (PD). The emerging evidence has supported that microglia may play key roles in the progressive neurodegeneration in PD and might be a promising therapeutic target. Ganoderma lucidum (GL), a traditional Chinese medicinal herb, has been shown potential neuroprotective effect in our clinical trials that lead us to speculate that it might possess potent anti-inflammatory and immunomodulating properties. To test this hypothesis, the present study investigated the potential neuroprotective effect of GL and underlying mechanism through inhibiting microglial activation using co-cultures of dopaminergic neurons and microglia. The cultures of microglia or MES23.5 cells alone or together were treated for 24 h with lipopolysaccharide (LPS, 0.25 μg/mL) as a positive control, GL extracts (50-400 μg/mL) or MES23.5 cell membrane fragments (150 μg/mL) were used in treatment groups. Microglia activation, microglia-derived harmful factors and [(3)H]dopamine ([(3)H]DA) uptake of MES23.5 cells were analyzed. The results showed that microglia were activated by LPS and MPP(+)-treated MES23.5 cell membrane fragments, respectively. Meanwhile, GL extracts significantly prevented the production of microglia-derived proinflammatory and cytotoxic factors, including nitric oxide, tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) and interleukin 1β (IL-1β), in a dose-dependent manner and down-regulated the TNF-α and IL-1β expressions on mRNA level. In addition, GL extracts antagonized the reduction of [(3)H]DA uptake induced by MPP(+) and microglial activation. In conclusion, these results suggest that GL may be a promising agent for the treatment of PD through anti-inflammation.
Rheumatoid arthritis is a common chronic inflammatory and destructive arthropathy that cannot be cured and that has substantial personal, social, and economic costs. The long-term prognosis is poor: 80 percent of affected patients are disabled after 20 years,1 and life expectancy is reduced by an average of 3 to 18 years.2 The medical cost of rheumatoid arthritis averages $5,919 per case per year in the United States3 and approximately £2,600 per case per year in the United Kingdom.4 Current slow-acting antirheumatic drugs have limited efficacy and many side effects. Moreover, they do not improve the long-term prognosis of rheumatoid arthritis. . . .