TUESDAY, April 8 (HealthDay News) -- A combination of the active ingredients in reishi mushrooms and green tea inhibited the growth of tumors and extended survival time of mice with sarcomas, two Chinese studies show.
Sarcomas are cancers of the bone, cartilage, fat, muscle, blood vessels, or other connective or supportive tissue.
Both reishi mushrooms and green tea have long held a place in traditional medicine in Asia. Recent research has shown that both enhance the body's immune function, according to background information in a news release about the two new studies by researchers at the Pharmanex BJ Clinical Pharmacology Center in Beijing.
In one study, researchers injected mice with sarcoma cells and then gave them either low, medium or high doses of a product (ReishiMax) that contains high concentrations of the active components in reishi mushrooms, including polysaccharides and triterpenes, or a combination of ReishiMax and Tegreen, a product that's 98 percent to 99 percent made of green tea polyphenols.
All the mice eventually died, but the ones that received the combination treatment lived longer.
In the second study, groups of health mice were given either low, medium or high doses of ReishiMax or low, medium or high doses of a combination of ReishiMax and Tegreen. After 14 days of treatment, the mice were injected with sarcoma cells. The treatment then continued for another 14 days.
Tumor development in the mice that received the combination treatment was less than in those that received only ReishiMax and 45 percent less than mice that received no treatment.
The study was expected to be presented Tuesday at the Experimental Biology 2008 meeting in San Diego.
The Sarcoma Foundation of America has more about sarcoma.
SOURCE: Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, news release, April 8, 2008