European Food Research and Technology

, Volume 234, Issue 3, pp 369–380

Health-promoting potential of edible macromycetes under special consideration of polysaccharides: a review

Review Paper


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.


Edible mushrooms Polysaccharides Bioactivity Health-promoting potential 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of Technology of Plant Origin FoodPoznan University of Life SciencesPoznanPoland
  2. 2.Department of Human Nutrition HygienePoznan University of Life SciencesPoznanPoland

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