Sanghuang (Phellinus linteus)

While some complementary and alternative techniques have been studied scientifically, high-quality data regarding safety, effectiveness, and mechanism of action are limited or controversial for most therapies. Whenever possible, it is recommended that practitioners be licensed by a recognized professional organization that adheres to clearly published standards. In addition, before starting a new technique or engaging a practitioner, it is recommended that patients speak with their primary healthcare provider(s). Potential benefits, risks (including financial costs), and alternatives should be carefully considered. The below monograph is designed to provide historical background and an overview of clinically-oriented research, and neither advocates for or against the use of a particular therapy.

Related Terms

  • Aoshima medicinal mushroom, bai hua rong, hispidin, hispolon, Hymenochaetaceae (family), interfungins A, lintenole, keumsa sangwhang mushroom, meshimakobu (Japanese), mud mushroom, mulberry yellow, ohňovec hartigův (Czech), polypore, song gen (Chinese), phellinone, Phellinus linteus, sang-hwang (Korean), suanghuang (Chinese), teng.

Background

  • Sanghuang (Phellinus linteus) is a medicinal mushroom that has reportedly been used in Asian countries for centuries for a variety of ailments, including inflammation, gastrointestinal problems, and cancer.

  • Although human clinical trials are lacking, sanghuang has been used to treat cancer in a few cases. In preliminary research, sanghuang has been shown to reduce tumor size, prevent metastasis in a variety of cancers, and enhance the beneficial effects of several anticancer drugs when used in combination therapy.

Scientific Evidence

Uses

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.

Cancer

Although human evidence is lacking, sanghuang has been shown to have anticancer properties. Further research is required before a conclusion can be made.

*Key to grades:

Tradition

The below uses are based on tradition or scientific theories. They often have not been thoroughly tested in humans, and safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious and should be evaluated by a qualified health care professional.

  • Allergy, antibacterial, anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, arthritis, bursitis, cardiovascular risk reduction, cervical spondylosis (abnormal wear on bones and cartilage of the neck), degenerative joint disease/osteoarthritis, dementia, diabetes, diarrhea, fibromyalgia, gastric ulcer prophylaxis (ethanol-induced), gastroenteritis, hemorrhage, immune stimulant, liver protection, neck stiffness, pain (leg), sepsis, ulcer.

Dosing

The below doses are based on scientific research, publications, traditional use, or expert opinion. Many herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested, and safety and effectiveness may not be proven. Brands may be made differently, with variable ingredients, even within the same brand. The below doses may not apply to all products. You should read product labels, and discuss doses with a qualified healthcare provider before starting therapy.

Adults (18 years and older)

  • There is no proven safe or effective dose for sanghuang in adults.

Children (under 18 years old)

  • There is no proven safe or effective dose for sanghuang in children.

Safety

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not strictly regulate herbs and supplements. There is no guarantee of strength, purity or safety of products, and effects may vary. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy. Consult a healthcare provider immediately if you experience side effects.

Allergies

  • Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or sensitivity to sanghuang.

Side Effects and Warnings

  • Use cautiously in people with enlarged prostate. Although they have not been well studied in humans, side effects of sanghuang may include enlarged prostate.

  • Use cautiously in individuals taking medication that is metabolized by the liver’s cytochrome P450 enzyme system.

  • Use cautiously in individuals with autoimmune diseases or in individuals using agents that suppress the immune system, as sanghuang extract may increase immune function.

  • Use cautiously in children or pregnant or breastfeeding women, due to lack of scientific evidence.

  • Avoid in individuals with a known allergy or sensitivity to sanghuang.

Pregnancy and Breastfeeding

  • Use cautiously in pregnant or breastfeeding women, due to lack of scientific evidence.

Interactions

Most herbs and supplements have not been thoroughly tested for interactions with other herbs, supplements, drugs, or foods. The interactions listed below are based on reports in scientific publications, laboratory experiments, or traditional use. You should always read product labels. If you have a medical condition, or are taking other drugs, herbs, or supplements, you should speak with a qualified healthcare provider before starting a new therapy.

Interactions with Drugs

  • Sanghuang may interfere with the way the body processes certain drugs using the liver’s cytochrome P450 enzyme system. As a result, the levels of these drugs may be increased or decreased in the blood and may cause increased effects or potentially serious adverse reactions. People using any medications should check the package insert and speak with a qualified healthcare professional, including a pharmacist, about possible interactions.

  • Sanghuang may also interact with Alzheimer’s agents, antibiotics, anticancer agents, antihistamines, anti-inflammatory agents, antiulcer agents, agents that inhibit growth of blood vessels, agents that affect the immune system, and cholesterol-lowering agents.

Interactions with Herbs and Dietary Supplements

  • Sanghuang may interfere with the way the body processes certain herbs or supplements using the liver’s cytochrome P450 enzyme system. As a result, the levels of other herbs or supplements may become too high or too low in the blood. It may also alter the effects that other herbs or supplements possibly have on the cytochrome P450 system.

  • Sanghuang may also interact with Alzheimer’s herbs and supplements, antibacterials, anticancer herbs and supplements, antihistamines, anti-inflammatory herbs and supplements, antioxidants, antiulcer herbs and supplements, cholesterol-lowering herbs and supplements, herbs and supplements that inhibit growth of blood vessels, herbs and supplements that affect the immune system, and mulberry.

Author Information

  • This information is based on a systematic review of scientific literature edited and peer-reviewed by contributors to the Natural Standard Research Collaboration (www.naturalstandard.com).

References

Natural Standard developed the above evidence-based information based on a thorough systematic review of the available scientific articles. For comprehensive information about alternative and complementary therapies on the professional level, go to www.naturalstandard.com. Selected references are listed below.

  1. Chen, W., He, F. Y., and Li, Y. Q. The apoptosis effect of hispolon from Phellinus linteus (Berkeley & Curtis) Teng on human epidermoid KB cells. J Ethnopharmacol. 4-21-2006;105(1-2):280-285. View Abstract
  2. Choi, Y. H., Yan, G. H., Chai, O. H., et al. Inhibition of anaphylaxis-like reaction and mast cell activation by water extract from the fruiting body of Phellinus linteus. Biol Pharm.Bull. 2006;29(7):1360-1365. View Abstract
  3. Choi, S. B., Park, C. H., Choi, M. K., et al. Improvement of insulin resistance and insulin secretion by water extracts of Cordyceps militaris, Phellinus linteus, and Paecilomyces tenuipes in 90% pancreatectomized rats. Biosci.Biotechnol.Biochem. 2004;68(11):2257-2264. View Abstract
  4. Hur, J. M., Yang, C. H., Han, S. H., et al. Antibacterial effect of Phellinus linteus against methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus. Fitoterapia 2004;75(6):603-605. View Abstract
  5. Kim, G. Y., Lee, J. Y., Lee, J. O., et al. Partial characterization and immunostimulatory effect of a novel polysaccharide-protein complex extracted from Phellinus linteus. Biosci.Biotechnol.Biochem. 2006;70(5):1218-1226. View Abstract
  6. Kim, G. Y., Choi, G. S., Lee, S. H., et al. Acidic polysaccharide isolated from Phellinus linteus enhances through the up-regulation of nitric oxide and tumor necrosis factor-alpha from peritoneal macrophages. J Ethnopharmacol. 2004;95(1):69-76. View Abstract
  7. Lee, H. J., Lee, H. J., Lim, E. S., et al. Cambodian Phellinus linteus inhibits experimental metastasis of melanoma cells in mice via regulation of urokinase type plasminogen activator. Biol Pharm.Bull. 2005;28(1):27-31. View Abstract
  8. Lee, Y. S., Kang, Y. H., Jung, J. Y., et al. Inhibitory constituents of aldose reductase in the fruiting body of Phellinus linteus. Biol Pharm.Bull. 2008;31(4):765-768. View Abstract
  9. Lim, B. O., Jeon, T. I., Hwang, S. G., et al. Phellinus linteus grown on germinated brown rice suppresses IgE production by the modulation of Th1/Th2 balance in murine mesenteric lymph node lymphocytes. Biotechnol.Lett. 2005;27(9):613-617. View Abstract
  10. Matsuba, S., Matsuno, H., Sakuma, M., et al. Phellinus linteus Extract Augments the Immune Response in Mitomycin C-Induced Immunodeficient Mice. Evid.Based.Complement Alternat.Med 2008;5(1):85-90. View Abstract
  11. Nam, S. W., Han, J. Y., Kim, J. I., et al. Spontaneous regression of a large hepatocellular carcinoma with skull metastasis. J Gastroenterol.Hepatol. 2005;20(3):488-492. View Abstract
  12. Park, I. H., Chung, S. K., Lee, K. B., et al. An antioxidant hispidin from the mycelial cultures of Phellinus linteus. Arch.Pharm.Res 2004;27(6):615-618. View Abstract
  13. Shibata, Y., Kashiwagi, B., Arai, S., et al. Administration of extract of mushroom Phellinus linteus induces prostate enlargement with increase in stromal component in experimentally developed rat model of benign prostatic hyperplasia. Urology 2005;66(2):455-460. View Abstract
  14. Song, Y. S., Kim, S. H., Sa, J. H., et al. Anti-angiogenic, antioxidant and xanthine oxidase inhibition activities of the mushroom Phellinus linteus. J Ethnopharmacol. 2003;88(1):113-116. View Abstract
  15. Zhu, T., Kim, S. H., and Chen, C. Y. A medicinal mushroom: Phellinus linteus. Curr Med Chem 2008;15(13):1330-1335. View Abstract

The information in this monograph is intended for informational purposes only, and is meant to help users better understand health concerns. Information is based on review of scientific research data, historical practice patterns, and clinical experience. This information should not be interpreted as specific medical advice. Users should consult with a qualified healthcare provider for specific questions regarding therapies, diagnosis and/or health conditions, prior to making therapeutic decisions.