Reishi & Breast Cancer

1. Reishi assists the immune system in preventing secondary infections. As if cancer wasn’t challenging to begin with, secondary attacks on the immune system from environmental pathogenic influences, such as viruses and bacteria, make the immune system particularly vulnerable in those already experiencing oncological issues.

2. Reishi helps breast cancer patients. Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is the most pervasive cancer of this type. New findings confirm that Reishi is a suitable IBC therapeutic – because of its ability to selectively inhibit cancer cell viability.

The Journal of Nutrition and Cancer published findings, from researchers, that showed the Reishi mushroom consistently inhibited cell invasion and disrupted cell spheroids involved in the invasive nature of cancer cells.

3. Reishi has multi-faceted immunomodulatory effects. Studies highlight how Reishi can identify potential pathogenic invaders by amplifying natural killer cell activity. Because Reishi’s therapeutic action can break down fibrinogen, an outer layer that protects cancer cells, they are more susceptible to cell death.

4. Keeping healthy cells intact has been demonstrated by Reishi. In a study observing its effects on ovarian cancer cells and cell-mediated responses, Reishi inhibited cell colony formation and cell migration demonstrating its ability to protect already healthy cells. The study also highlighted how Reishi takes action to assist in inhibiting tumor cell growth.

5. Reishi regulates programmed cell death. Referred to as apoptosis, reishi extract has the ability to stop cancer cells in their tracks. Eventually all healthy cells die, but certain cancer cells do not undergo apoptosis and divide endlessly wreaking internal havoc. Reishi intermediates this process successfully.

6. Reishi beats cancer at its own ‘cell-squeezing’ game. Cancer cells, through the protein-destroying enzyme, matrix metalloproteinase squeeze their way into healthy cells and destroy surrounding tissue. They can also enter the bloodstream to metastasize. Reishi has been shown to block the enzyme and prevent cancer from penetrating where it does not belong.

Inflammatory breast cancer (IBC) is the most lethal and least understood form of advanced breast cancer. Its lethality originates from its nature of invading the lymphatic system and absence of a palpable tumor mass. Different from other metastatic breast cancer cells, IBC cells invade by forming tumor spheroids that retain E-cadherin-based cell–cell adhesions. Herein we describe the potential of the medicinal mushroom Ganoderma lucidum (Reishi) as an attractive candidate for anti-IBC therapy. Reishi contains biological compounds that are cytotoxic against cancer cells. We report the effects of Reishi on viability, apoptosis, invasion, and its mechanism of action in IBC cells (SUM-149). Results show that Reishi selectively inhibits cancer cell viability although it does not affect the viability of noncancerous mammary epithelial cells. Apoptosis induction is consistent with decreased cell viability. Reishi inhibits cell invasion and disrupts the cell spheroids that are characteristic of the IBC invasive pathology. Reishi decreases the expression of genes involved in cancer cell survival and proliferation (BCL-2, TERT, PDGFB), and invasion and metastasis (MMP-9), whereas it increases the expression of IL8. Reishi reduces BCL-2, BCL-XL, E-cadherin, eIF4G, p120-catenin, and c-Myc protein expression and gelatinase activity. These findings suggest that Reishi is an effective anti-IBC therapeutic.

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