Turkey: Ganoderma Lucidum Protects Brain Tissue Against Trauma-Induced Oxidative Stress

- Aug 14, 2018-

Can Ganoderma Lucidum be useful when the brain is traumatized by external forces? According to a study published by Dicle University in the Korean Journal of Neurotrauma, the answer seems to be affirmative, because Ganoderma lucidum seems to have the potential to accelerate brain trauma recovery.

The researchers used the artificial method of "falling from a height" to cause traumatic brain injury in rats. Half of them (16) were not treated (the brain injury group), and the other half was fed with water extracts of polysaccharide-riched Reishi Mushroom fruit body via the gastric tube after 30 minutes of injury (brain injury + Ganoderma Lucidum group). The latter group was given a daily dose of 20 ml/kg (the polysaccharide content of 2 mg/ml) for 7 consecutive days.

In addition to the inflammatory reaction in the brain, the brain tissue is easily damaged by oxidation (increased oxidative stress) due to an increase in the number of free radicals and a decrease in antioxidant enzymes. In addition, cerebral edema associated with bleeding can squeeze the brain tissue, which will make the brain injury more serious; the damaged blood-brain barrier (a natural barrier between the blood vessels and the brain that blocks foreign matter from entering the brain via the blood) causes more white blood cells to infiltrate the brain or cause brain infections, making the inflammatory response more intense.

All of the above-mentioned conditions are not conducive to the recovery of brain tissue from trauma. However, animal experiments from Turkey show that:

Compared with the untreated "brain injury group", the brain tissue of the "brain injury + Ganoderma lucidum group"  is less damaged by free radicals since more glutathione peroxidase (GSH) can neutralize free radicals. Moreover,  the inflammatory response of white blood cells and the condition of the cerebral edema were less severe, and the permeability of the blood-brain barrier is close to normal.

In addition, it can be seen from the cerebral cortex tissue section that Lingzhi polysaccharide can improve the condition of vasodilation and edema, repair nerve cells, and accelerate the recovery of the injured brain.

The cerebral cortex is a connected skin structure wrapped in the outer layer of the brain and with many wrinkles. It is responsible for higher levels of emotion and thinking ability. Therefore, the restoration of this area is of great significance for the recovery of brain function in patients with brain injury.

It can be seen from the above experimental data that the aqueous extract of Ganoderma Lucidum fruit body can accelerate the recovery of brain injury by reducing the oxidative stress and reducing the inflammatory reaction. Therefore, the researchers believe that it may be helpful to the adjuvant treatment of brain trauma with appropriate doses of Ganoderma lucidum polysaccharides on time.