Health-promoting potential of edible macromycetes under special consideration of polysaccharides: a review
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- Stachowiak, B. & Reguła, J. Eur Food Res Technol (2012) 234: 369. doi:10.1007/s00217-011-1656-9
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Edible macromycetes for ages have been used by humans, not only as a source of food, but medicinal resources as well; however, this happened first of all in the civilizations of the East. In recent years, they have become subjects of numerous scientific studies in Europe and United States. It was shown that they constitute a rich source of bioactive compounds exhibiting antitumor, hypocholesterolemic, immunosuppressive, antioxidant, antimicrobial and anti-inflammatory properties. These compounds include non-starch polysaccharides, polysaccharide–protein and polysaccharide–peptide complexes, ribonucleases, proteases and lectins. Mushrooms also accumulate many secondary metabolites, that is, polyphenols, polyketides, terpenes and steroids. Most of the above-mentioned compounds exhibit a clinical potential. In this article, the health-promoting potential of mushroom polisaccharides was characterized. The special attention was paid on their antitumor, antiatherogenic and prebiotic activities.