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GANODERMA LUCIDUM (GL) is an herbal medicine with antitumor activity capable of suppressing the growth of various tumors in vivo. The exact mechanism of GL against tumor cells is not clearly understood. The present study aimed to evaluate the direct cytotoxic effect of crude polysaccharide fractions (FO and FA) of GL extracts from both Thai and Japanese strains in P388 mouse leukemic cells (P388 cells). In addition, the activity of various antioxidant enzymes superoxide dismutase (SOD), glutathione (GSH) peroxidase, and catalase) were measured in P388 cells both in the absence and in the presence of GL extracts.
GL had no cytotoxic effect, though it inhibited the growth of P388 cells in a concentration dependent manner. The potency of inhibition was FA Thai > FO Japanese > FA Japanese and FO Thai. The SOD, GSH peroxidase and catalase activities in P388 cells were 19.04 U/mg protein, 0.00126 U/mg protein and 0.00000483 sec- 1 mg protein- 1 , respectively. FA Thai and FO Japanese fractions of GL extracts significantly increased SOD activity 29.78 % and 20.69 %, respectively. FA Thai and FA Japanese fractions significantly increased GSH peroxidase activity. None of the GL extracts altered catalase activity.
These data thus indicated that-GL extracts exhibited no cytotoxic effect in P388 cells but they could inhibit the growth of P388 cells. The growth inhibition of P388 cells was not correlated with GSH peroxidase and catalase enzymes. This inhibition may result from the increased SOD activity.
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