Antrodia camphorata (A. camphorata) is a fungus commonly used for treatment of viral hepatitis and cancer in Chinese folk medicine. Extract of A. camphorate is reported to possess anti-inflammatory, antihepatitis B virus and anticancer activities. In this study, we tested the in vivo effects of polysaccharides derived from A. camphorata (AC-PS) on immune function by detection of cytokine expression and evaluation of the immune phenotype in a T1/T2 doubly transgenic mouse model. The protective effect of AC-PS in mice was tested by infection with Schistosoma mansoni. The induction of large amounts of IFN-γ, IL-2 and TNF-á mRNA were detected after 2 and 4 weeks of oral AC-PS administration in BALB/c and C57BL/6 mice. In transgenic mice, 3 to 6 weeks of oral AC-PS administration increased the proportion of CD4+ T cells and B cells within the spleen. More specifically, there was an increase of Th1 CD4+ T cells and Be1 cells among spleen cells as observed by detection the of Type1/Type2 marker molecules. By using a disease model of parasitic infection, we found that AC-PS treatment inhibited infection with S. mansoni in BALB/C and C57BL/6 mice. AC-PS appears to influence the immune system of mice into developing Th1 responses and have potential for preventing infection with S. mansoni.
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