Compound Derived From Yunzhi Mushroom Shows Promising Anti-Tumor Activity For Dogs With Cancer

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The Coriolus versicolor mushroom, known commonly as the Yunzhi mushroom, has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for more than 2,000 years. The compound in the mushroom that is believed to have immune-boosting properties is a compound known as a polysaccharopeptide, or PSP. In the past two decades, some studies have suggested that PSP may also have a tumor-fighting effect.

A particularly compelling study conducted by the University of Pennsylvania College of Veterinary Medicine in May 2017 showed a great deal of promise in treating with PSP, in the specific case of an aggressive cancer of the spleen seen commonly in dogs, hemangiosarcoma.  The current median survival time of dogs diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma with no treatment is 86 days.

Fifteen dogs that had been diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma participated in the trial. Divided into three groups of five, each group received a different dose of PSP — 25, 50 or 100 mg/kg/day — of I’m-Yunity, a formulation of PSP that has been tested and vetted for quality control and consistency in its formulation.  The owners were instructed to give their dog daily capsules of I’m-Yunity that were compounded by Penn pharmacists. Each month, the owners brought their dogs to Penn’s Ryan Veterinary Hospital for follow-up visits where researchers took blood samples and conducted ultrasounds to determine the extent that tumors developed, increased in size and/or spread to other organs and tissues.

The results of supplementation with I’m-Yunity was nothing short of remarkable.  The biggest benefit was seen in the 100 mg/kg dosing group whose median survival time was 199 days, far surpassing the current median survival time of untreated hemangiosarcoma.  Subsequently, researchers are now preparing further trials of I’m-Yunity in dogs with hemangiosarcoma to confirm and refine their results. One trial will compare I’m-Yunity to a placebo for owners who opt not to pursue chemotherapy in their pet and another will compare the compound to routine standard of care chemotherapy.

Depending on the results, veterinarians could eventually prescribe the compound for palliative treatment of hemangiosarcoma and potentially start looking at it’s use for other cancers. What’re more, there may be benefit in treating dog breeds that are especially genetically prone to hemangiosarcoma in a preventative fashion to help stave off the onset of disease.

Dr. Roger Welton is a practicing veterinarian and highly regarded media personality through a number of topics and platforms.  In addition to being passionate about integrative veterinary medicine for which he is a nationally renowned expert, Dr. Welton was also an accomplished college lacrosse player and remains to this day very involved in the sport.  He is president of Maybeck Animal Hospital , runs the successful veterinary/animal health  blogs Web-DVM and Dr. Roger’s Holistic Veterinary Care, and fulfills his passion for lacrosse through his lacrosse and sport blog, The Creator’s Game.

Primary source for article: Compound Derived From a Mushroom Lengthens Survival Time in Dogs With Cancer, Penn Vet Study Finds  


This Post Has 17 Comments

  1. Femi Logo

    Another knowledge gained today from this site. Keep the good work going. Thanks

  2. Obalade Damilola

    This is great news..pets with tumors can now be treated.. I sincerely hope that treatment is found for other forms of cancer..

  3. Marcene

    This could lead to curing cancer altogether. May it be dogs or humans. Is this already out in the market? In medicine form? For one China is not just a few blocks away so they must mass produce it here to be effective.

  4. Eleonora

    This is definitely good news but I do not think the research is done yet. The potential of this is really huge however, the resources are far away, the research has to be quick. Otherwise, this is all what it is potential.

  5. Hank

    It is safe to say that cancer is a step closer to being cured thanks to this. I do not know much but it is a lot safer than CHEMO? It is fundamentally herbal based which makes it healthier than any conventional treatments. Who knows if it is successful for dogs. It can have human trials too.

  6. David Mureithi

    This is good news for affected pets and their owners. This discovery will be much useful.

  7. Roy

    This is truly a wonder mushroom. I hope the research gets concluded soon so that we have a cure for tumors in dogs.

  8. Sarah

    This is extremely welcome news to all dog owners out there. Cancer has been such a nightmare in dogs lately.

  9. Meg W

    The fact that the compound comes from nature is such good news. I always prefer natural remedies to man made ones.

  10. Julian

    It’s about time we got a cure for cancer in dogs. It has been a really long time coming!

  11. Patricia

    It looks like the research is not yet fully conclusive. I hope they further the research and get successful. Wishing them all the best.

  12. Cynthia

    It’s delightful to see that there is a group of scientists and researchers deicated to finding a cure for cancer in dogs. It is such a noble thing to do.

  13. Oliver

    I hope that eventually prescribe the compound for palliative treatment of hemangiosarcoma and potentially start looking at it’s use for other cancers. This is such great news!!

  14. Xavier

    Who would have thought that the cure to dog cancer lied in the humble mushroom this whole time. Another win for nature!

  15. Daphne

    I like the methodology that the researchers used. The results yielded look very credible.

  16. Benard

    Further trials on more dogs should be fast tracked to determine the efficacy of the compound. This could prove to be quite revolutionary in animal medicine.

  17. Ray

    This shows that we still have a long way to go but this is a good start. Oriental and mainstream medicine working together? I Hope this gets approved and will be use for cancer.

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