The brown roll-rim mushroom, paxillus involutus (Agaricomycetes), as a promising biomedical research resource

Ivan V. Zmitrovich, Nina V. Belova, Nadezhda V. Psurtseva, Solomon P. Wasser

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The brown roll-rim mushroom (Paxillus involutus) quickly produces biomass in nature, although, being a mycorrhizal fungus, it is rather poorly maintained in culture. Information about its toxic properties is controversial. Until the mid-20th century, the species was considered as an edible fungus; however, data later accumulated regarding its poisonous properties, leading to the term “Paxillus syndrome.” Finally, some substances isolated from this fungus have shown certain cytotoxic properties. In the present paper, we highlight immunological and oncotherapeutic aspects of P. involutus. Since mushrooms can have quite a few unidentified antigens complementary to B-lymphocyte receptors, this is a hidden danger of using unfractionated mushroom raw materials for preventive and oncotherapy purposes, and we hope that this article stimulates immunological groups worldwide to identify the “X” antigen related to the Paxillus syndrome. Oncotherapy effects of the known bioactive complexes of P. involutus are associated with a specific inhibition of some growth receptors of the cancer cell, whereas experimentation with purified substances of P. involutus and various families of growth receptors of cancer cell has good prospects. A clear speciation is fixing within the P. involutus complex. The key for identification of species of P. involutus complex is given and cultural characteristics of P. involutus strains kept at Komarov Botanical Institute Basidiomycetes Culture Collection are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1241-1247
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Medicinal Mushrooms
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2019 by Begell House.


  • Cancer therapy
  • Chamonixin
  • Cultural characteristics
  • Growth receptors
  • Hemolysis
  • Immunocomplex-me-diated hypersensitivity of type III
  • Involutin
  • Medicinal mushrooms
  • Paxillus involutus complex
  • Paxillus syndrome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Pharmacology


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