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Stijve, T., Audrey, Daniel., Maria Angekla Lopes de Almeida Amazonas and Walter Goessier. 2003. Potential Toxic Constituents of Agaricus Brasilliensis (A. blazei ss. Heinen.), as Compared to other Cultivated and Wild-Growing Edible Mushrooms. Deutsche Lebensmittel-Rundschau | 99. Jahrgang, Heft 12:475-481.
Re: EXCLUSIVE: Potential Toxic Constituents of Agaricus Brazille [Re: mjshroomer] #2505473 - 04/01/04 01:46 PM (12 years, 9 months ago)
Japan warns 'health mushroom' could promote cancer
Japan's government has warned that a mushroom believed by folk doctors to fight cancer could actually promote the condition, leading a health-food firm to recall it in a blow to a huge market.
The Agaricus mushroom, which is originally from Brazil and which many Japanese believe fights cancer, was popularized in the 1990s as companies sold it in processed form.
But interim results of tests on rats showed that they suffered more carcinogen activity if they ate granulated food with five to 10 times the normal dose of the mushroom, the health ministry said late Monday.
The ministry said it was not yet proven if humans were at risk from the mushrooms, but asked Kirin Well-Foods, a subsidiary of leading beer company Kirin Brewery, to recall the Agaricus formula voluntarily.
"While we consider how the product should be dealt with based on the food safety commission's (upcoming) evaluation, please refrain from taking" the Kirin product, a ministry warning said.
"Although Agaricus is said to be 'effective in fighting cancer' or 'enhance your immune power', it is sold as ordinary food and the health ministry has not confirmed it is effective on human beings," it added.
Kirin's product is one of numerous items sold in Japan from Agaricus, a health food market worth an estimated 35 billion yen (297 million dollars) a year, the Tokyo Shimbun newspaper said, quoting a health magazine.
The ministry also tested products made by two other companies but so far they have not been found to promote cancer.
Kirin Well-Foods said it would recall the product and its three other Agaricus items. It imports dried Agaricus from China and granulates it in Japan.
Annual sales of the four products are worth about 250 million yen, with Kirin Well-Foods holding some 10 percent share of Agaricus products sold at drugstores, according to a company spokesman.
It has received 83 complaints from customers over its Agaricus products since December 2002, including over the death of a person who died of liver complications although the linkage was not proven, he said.