Cancer Prevention: gastric, leukemia, liver, colon, and breast cancer cells

Cancer occurs when DNA becomes damaged and causes cells to divide and replicate out of control.

Both in vitro and animal studies suggest that lion’s mane mushroom extract may have potent anti-cancer effects. Lion's Mane possesses many beneficial functions such as anticancer, anti-ulcer, anti-inflammation and antimicrobial effects, immunomodulation and other activities.

An extensive study published in 2014 evaluated the anticancer efficacy of Lion's Mane against three gastrointestinal cancers such as liver, colorectal and gastric cancers in both in vitro (test tubes) of cancer cell lines and in vivo (animal) studies of tumor xenografts and discover the active compounds. The effects of Lion's Mane were found to be stronger against three gastrointestinal cancers compared to effects from a common chemotherapy drug, 5-FU (fluorouracil). The results stating extracts of Lion's Mane to be more effective than traditional cancer medications in restraining tumor growth. 

The study revealed 22 different phytocompounds found in the active cancer cell–killing lion’s mane extract, including cyclic dipeptides, indole alkaloids, pyrimidines, flavones, anthraquinones, amino acid derivatives, and phenolic compounds. In the in vivo tumor xenograft studies, significant antitumor efficacy was shown, without toxicity to the host. In fact, when Lion’s Mane extract is mixed with human cancer cells in a test tube, they cause the cancer cells to die at a faster rate. (1)

Studies dating as far back as 1992 report that Lion’s Mane shows high antitumor activity. Lion’s Mane promotes the Th1 response, which is important for fighting tumors. In mice, Lion’s Mane induced the death of leukemia, liver, colon, gastric, and breast cancer cells. (2)(3)

Lion’s Mane extract repeatedly shows to slow the spread of cancer. Another animal study of colon cancer, compares hot-water extract and ethanol extracts of H. erinaceus strongly eliciting cancer cell death through apoptosis and inhibiting metastasis of cancer cells to the lungs by 66% and 69%, respectively. The results demonstrate the effectiveness of both hot-water extracts and ethanol extracts of Lion's Mane as beneficial anti-metastatic agents. (4)

Several other experiments have been recorded. More studies are being performed to further our understanding of the chemistry within Lion's Mane and its anti-cancer effects.

Click on other conditions below to continue exploring studies done on Lion's Mane: