The goji berry (Lycium barbarum), has long been recognised in Traditional Chinese Medicine for various medicinal effects based on its antioxidant and immune-modulating activities. A polysaccharide isolated from lycium was shown to have immune enhancing, antitumor and, hepatoprotective activities in vitro.
Immune Booster and Anticancer Researches
Goji, rich in polysaccharides, strengthen the immune system. In some study groups with elderly people the goji berry was given once a day for 3 weeks, very effective results were experienced and 67% of the patients T cell transformation functions tripled and the activity of the patients white cell interleukin-2 doubled. In a 1988 report published by the “State Scientific and Technological Commission of China“, scientists discovered that after eating 50 g of goji berry, participants demonstrated an increase in white blood cell count and a 75% increase in the antibody immunoglobulin A. A Chinese study reported in the Chinese Journal of Oncology in 1994 found that 79 people with cancer responded better to treatment when goji juice was added to their regimen. 79 patients in advanced stages of cancer were treated with the drug LAK/IL-2 combined with Lycium Barbarum polysaccharides. Regression of the several cancers was observed. The response rate of patients treated with LAK/IL-2 and LBP was 40 percent while that of patients treated only with LAK/IL-2 was 16 percent study.
Lycium barbarum polysaccharides (LBPs) are major functional constituents in red-colored fruits of L. barbarum. Lycium barbarum polysaccharide has potential anticancer activity. A lab study reported in 2001 found that these polysaccharides appear to prevent human leukemia cell growth. According to a study published in 2010 in Medical Oncology demonstrated Lycium barbarum polysaccharide, stopped the growth cycle of colon cancer and human gastric cells in the laboratory. Scientists administered 100 to 1000 mg/L of goji polysaccharides to 2 types of human colon cancer cells for 1 to 8 days. The polysaccharides inhibited cell growth in both colon cancer cell lines.
2-O-β-D-Glucopyranosyl-L-ascorbic acid (AA-2βG) is a natural derivative of vitamin C isolated from goji fruit. Researchers investigated the activities of AA-2BG against cervical cancer cells. They showed that AA-2BG selectively induced cell death and repressed the spread of cervical cancer cells by stabilizing a specific protein. One of the compounds found in goji juice that is highly effective in the fight against cancer and other ailments in the human body is germanium. It is an oxygen catalyst, and since all forms of cancer are anaerobic, this compound has been demonstrated in research to potentially retard and even reverse the proliferation of cancer cells. Japanese studies indicate that organic germanium is effective in treating lung cancer, liver cancer, cervical cancer, uterine cancer, and testicular cancer when combined with other drugs. Lewis Lung cancer cells were transplanted in C57 BL mice, and the anticancer activities of both goji berry polysaccharides and radiation were measured. Following the experiment it was concluded that goji berry enhanced the effects of radiation in combating Lewis Lung cancer.