It is a Chinese-origin mushroom containing ß-glucan polysaccharides, polysaccharide-K / Krestin (PSK) and polysaccharidopéptide (PSP), known immunostimulating properties, antimicrobial and antitumor activity and traditionally used in Asia as a dietary supplement [1 ,2]. 


The biomass of the fungus acts as a nonspecific immunomodulator, boosting the immune system mainly after radio / chemotherapy. Their ß-glucans are capable of causing selective apoptosis on cancer cells but without affecting the healthy ones. There are several studies demonstrating that the PSK and PSP proteoglycans of the fungus stimulate the effect of natural killers and increase the number of T lymphocytes [3-6].

Coriolus versicolor has also been investigated in humans. An observational study [7] showed the potentiating effect of cellular immunity which results in an antitumor activity in patients with different types of solid cancers, many of them resistant to chemotherapy and radiotherapy. 


In patients with HPV infection, a regression effect of low-grade squamous intraepithelial lesions on the cervix has been observed, in addition to a significant virus negativization [8-11]. A recent study [12] evaluated the effect of Coriolus versicolor on patients with HPV + with low and high risk lesions. The authors concluded that the fungus potentiated the immune system of the patients in a natural way which meant the elimination of the virus. 


1. Ng TB. A review of research on the protein-bound polysaccharide (polysaccharopeptide, PSP) from the mushroom Coriolus versicolor (Basidiomycetes: Polyporaceae). Gen Pharmacol. 1998;30(1):1-4. 

2. Cheng KF, Leung OC. Revisión general de polysaccharopeptides (PSP) de C. versicolor: Los estudios farmacológicos y clínicos. Artículo de Revisión. Feb, 2008

3. Jiménez-Medina E, et al. The immunomodulator PSK induces in vitro cytotoxic activity in tumour cell lines via arrest of cell cycle and induction of apoptosis. BMC Cancer 2008 Mar 24;(8):78. 

4. Harhaji Lj, et al. Anti-tumor effect of Coriolus versicolor methanol extract against mouse B16 melanoma cells: in vitro and in vivo study. Food Chem Toxicol. 2008 May;46(5):1825-33.

5. Ho CY, et al. Coriolus versicolor (Yunzhi) extract attenuates growth of human leukemia xenografts and induces apoptosis through the mitochondrial pathway. Oncol Rep. 2006 Sep;16(3):609-16.

6. Chan SL, Yeung JH. Polysaccharide peptides from COV-1 strain of Coriolus versicolor induce hyperalgesia via inflammatory mediator release in the mouse. Life Sci. 2006 Apr 18;78(21):2463-70.

7. Kenyon J. Observational Non-Controlled Study of the Use of Coriolus versicolor supplementation in 30 Cancer patients. Mycology News 2003 Vol. 1 Edition 7. 

8. Chernev T. Coriolus-MRL supplementation in patients infected with low-risk and high risk HPV subtypes - Bulgarian experience. Poster in 3rd Congress of gynecologist and obstetricians of Macedonia (with international participation) 2013.

9. Couto S. Evaluation of Coriolus versicolor Supplementation in HPV Patients. Clin J of Mycology 2007; 2(1):2-5. 

10. Couto S. Coriolus versicolor en el tratamiento de las lesiones por VPH en el cuello del útero. Revista de Fitoterapia 2009; 9 (suppl 1): 55-58. 

11. Monro J. Cytokine Th1 to Th2 Shift can be Reversed by Coriolus. Prospective Trial for HPV Control with Coriolus. Clinical Journal of Mycology 2005; 1 (Ed. 10): 4.

12. Borisov S. Evaluación de Coriolus MRL en pacientes con HPV de bajo y alto riesgo. Revista Clínica de Micología 2012; 3: 2-3.