Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology

, Volume 67, Issue 4, pp 453–468

Medicinal mushroom modulators of molecular targets as cancer therapeutics

  • Ben-Zion Zaidman
  • Majed Yassin
  • Jamal Mahajna
  • Solomon P. Wasser
Mini-Review

DOI: 10.1007/s00253-004-1787-z

Cite this article as:
Zaidman, B., Yassin, M., Mahajna, J. et al. Appl Microbiol Biotechnol (2005) 67: 453. doi:10.1007/s00253-004-1787-z

Abstract

Empirical approaches to discover anticancer drugs and cancer treatments have made limited progress in the past several decades in finding a cure for cancer. The expanded knowledge of the molecular basis of tumorigenesis and metastasis, together with the inherently vast structural diversity of natural compounds found in mushrooms, provided unique opportunities for discovering new drugs that rationally target the abnormal molecular and biochemical signals leading to cancer. This review focuses on mushroom low-molecular-weight secondary metabolites targeting processes such as apoptosis, angiogenesis, metastasis, cell cycle regulation, and signal transduction cascades. Also discussed in this review are high-molecular-weight polysaccharides or polysaccharide–protein complexes from mushrooms that appear to enhance innate and cell-mediated immune responses, exhibit antitumor activities in animals and humans, and demonstrate the anticancer properties of selenium compounds accumulated in mushrooms.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2005

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ben-Zion Zaidman
    • 1
    • 2
  • Majed Yassin
    • 1
    • 2
  • Jamal Mahajna
    • 2
  • Solomon P. Wasser
    • 1
  1. 1.Biodiversity and Biotechnology Center of Cryptogamic Plants and Fungi, The Institute of EvolutionUniversity of HaifaHaifaIsrael
  2. 2.Migal–Galilee Technology CenterKiryat ShmonaIsrael