A study published in “Pharmacological Research” by the State Key Laboratory of Traditional Chinese Medicine Quality Research of the University of Macau (corresponding author of the research report) and many domestic research institutions in August 2020 found:
Supplementing mice with Ganoderma lucidum spore oil (800 mg/kg) every day for 27 consecutive days can significantly improve the phagocytic ability of macrophages and the toxicity of natural killer cells (NK cells).
Macrophages and natural killer cells are the protagonists of the “innate immune response”. Their role in the immune system is like the police soldiers patrolling and maintaining order in the human world. They can be said to be at the forefront of defense against various bacteria, viruses, and cancer cells.
Therefore, the response ability of macrophages and natural killer cells will increase with the supplement of spore oil, which can increase the chance of the immune system to kill various “invisible enemies”.
Why does spore oil improve immunity? It is closely related to intestinal bacteria.
The intestine is distributed with numerous immune cells and also contains all kinds of bacteria. Different dietary habits will strengthen or weaken different types of intestinal bacteria, and different structural ratios of intestinal flora and metabolites produced by different types of intestinal bacteria will affect the direction and level of the immune response.
According to the analysis of this research report, after mice have consumed spore oil for a period of time, the composition and metabolites of their intestinal flora will change, such as:
The increase of beneficial bacteria such as Lactobacillus, the decrease of harmful bacteria such as Staphylococcus and Helicobacter, and the change of more than a dozen species of metabolites such as dopamine and L-threonine in quantity.
These changes are beneficial to promote the phagocytosis of macrophages and enhance the killing ability of natural killer cells.
In the past few years, many studies have proved that the immune enhancement effect of Ganoderma lucidum fruiting body extract and spore powder is related to the regulation of intestinal flora and its metabolites. Nowadays, research has finally made up the gap in this aspect of spore oil.
Although increasing the activity of macrophages and natural killer cells can increase the defense level of the innate immune response, the formation of a complete and dense immune network also requires the support of other front-line sentinels (such as neutrophils and dendritic cells) and acquired immunity response members (such as T cells, B cells and antibodies).
Since the extract, spore powder and spore oil of Ganoderma lucidum have their own advantages in regulating immunity, why not simultaneously use them to maximize the chance of repelling the “invisible enemy”?
[Data Resource] Xu Wu, et al. An integrated microbiome and metabolomic analysis identifies immunoenhancing features of Ganoderma lucidum spores oil in mice. Pharmacol Res. 2020 Aug;158:104937. doi: 10.1016/j.phrs.2020.104937.
About the author/ Ms. Wu Tingyao
Wu Tingyao has been reporting on first-hand Ganoderma lucidum information since 1999. She is the author of “Ganoderma lucidum: Ingenious Beyond Description” (published in The People’s Medical Publishing House in April 2017).
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