Volume 10 Part 2 Article 71: Antitumour and Immunological Properties of Polysaccharides from Fungal Origin

Volume 10 Part 2 Article 71
Year 1979
Title: Antitumour and Immunological Properties of Polysaccharides from Fungal Origin
Author: G. Chihara


In spite of the tremendous efforts made by numerous workers throughout the world, there has not appeared a decisive cancer chemotherapeutic except a few that have been found effective for some leukemia and for tumours having a special character. This seems to be due, in part, to the direct application of the historical idea of «selective toxicity» in the chemotherapy of infections to cancer chemotherapy. Antitumour agents that will attack cancer cells directly, that is, tumouricidal agents designed for total kill of cancer cells, show a strong toxicity to the host, including destruction of various lymphocytes and marrow cells which are now known to play an important role in the mechanism of host’s resistance against cancer. On the other hand, there are several rei iable evidences that the host displays resistance agai nst cancer, and there is also an experimental evidence that the host attacks even autochthonous tumours through cell-mediated immune reaction (FOLEY 1953, PREHN and MAl N 1957, KLEI N et al., 1960, HEBEL 1961). Development of a substance or a method which enhances or potentiates such a resistance inherent in a human body against cancer must be one of the most important means in opening a new way for the arrest of cancer. In recent years, studies on the development of antitumour substances based on such idea have made a progress, and antitumour polysaccharides are one of such substances, together with Corynebacterium parvum and BacillusCalmette Guerin (BCG).

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