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Effects of Beta Glucan

A special issue of International Journal of Molecular Sciences (ISSN 1422-0067). This special issue belongs to the section "Biochemistry".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2019) | Viewed by 41775

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Pathology, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40292, USA
Interests: glucan; natural immunomodulators; cancer
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Natural products, useful in preventing and/or treating various diseases, have been sought after throughout the history of humankind. Usually, the mechanisms of action remain unknown and the interest of both the public and professionals slowly evaporates. Beta glucan is exceptional, as we know not only the receptors responsible for binding to several cell types, but also numerous mechanisms of action including signalling pathways. In the last decade, extensive research by numerous scientific groups has helped to reveal the extraordinary effects that beta glucan exerts on various physiological and pathophysiological processes in of our body. Based on more than 10,000 studies of various types of beta glucan, we can conclude that beta glucan from fungi (both macro- and micromycetes, particularly yeast), and seaweed are well-known biologic response modifiers that function as immunostimulants against infectious diseases and cancer.

This Special Issue is devoted to the exploitation of all aspects of beta glucan, including its isolation, characterization and biological effects.

Prof. Dr. Vaclav Vetvicka
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • Glucan
  • Immunity
  • Immunomodulator
  • Natural
  • Disease

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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14 pages, 3693 KiB  
Article
N-Terminal (1→3)-β-d-Glucan Recognition Proteins from Insects Recognize the Difference in Ultra-Structures of (1→3)-β-d-Glucan
by Yoshiyuki Adachi, Masaki Ishii, Takashi Kanno, Junko Tetsui, Ken-ichi Ishibashi, Daisuke Yamanaka, Noriko Miura and Naohito Ohno
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(14), 3498; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20143498 - 16 Jul 2019
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 3052
Abstract
Recognition of (1→3)-β-d-glucans (BGs) by invertebrate β-1,3-d-glucan recognition protein (BGRP) plays a significant role in the activation of Toll pathway and prophenoloxidase systems in insect host defense against fungal invasion. To examine the structure diversity of BGRPs for the [...] Read more.
Recognition of (1→3)-β-d-glucans (BGs) by invertebrate β-1,3-d-glucan recognition protein (BGRP) plays a significant role in the activation of Toll pathway and prophenoloxidase systems in insect host defense against fungal invasion. To examine the structure diversity of BGRPs for the recognition of physiochemically different BGs, the binding specificity of BGRPs cloned from four different insects to structure different BGs was characterized using ELISA. Recombinant BGRPs expressed as Fc-fusion proteins of human IgG1 bound to the solid phase of BGs. Based on the binding specificities, the BGRPs were categorized into two groups with different ultrastructures and binding characters; one group specifically binds BGs with triple-helical conformation, while the other group recognizes BGs with disordered conformations like single-helical or partially opened triple helix. The BGRPs from the silkworm and the Indian meal moth bound to the BGs with a triple-helical structure, whereas BGRPs from the red flour beetle and yellow mealworm beetle showed no binding to triple-helical BGs, but bound to alkaline-treated BGs that have a partially opened triple-helical conformation. This evidence suggests that the insect BGRPs can distinguish between different conformations of BGs and are equipped for determining the diversity of BG structures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Beta Glucan)
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15 pages, 1881 KiB  
Article
Fungal Exocellular (1-6)-β-d-glucan: Carboxymethylation, Characterization, and Antioxidant Activity
by Thais Vanessa Theis, Vidiany Aparecida Queiroz Santos, Patrícia Appelt, Aneli M. Barbosa-Dekker, Vaclav Vetvicka, Robert F. H. Dekker and Mário A. A. Cunha
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(9), 2337; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20092337 - 11 May 2019
Cited by 19 | Viewed by 3676
Abstract
Exocellular (1→6)-β-d-glucan (lasiodiplodan) produced by the fungus Lasiodiplodia theobromae MMPI was derivatized by carboxymethylation using different concentrations of a derivatizing agent. Lasiodiplodan was derivatized by carboxymethylation in an attempt to increase its solubility and enhance its biological activities. Carboxymethylglucans with degrees [...] Read more.
Exocellular (1→6)-β-d-glucan (lasiodiplodan) produced by the fungus Lasiodiplodia theobromae MMPI was derivatized by carboxymethylation using different concentrations of a derivatizing agent. Lasiodiplodan was derivatized by carboxymethylation in an attempt to increase its solubility and enhance its biological activities. Carboxymethylglucans with degrees of substitution (DS) of 0.32, 0.47, 0.51, 0.58, and 0.68 were produced and characterized. FTIR analysis showed a band of strong intensity at 1600 cm−1 and an absorption band at 1421 cm−1, resulting from asymmetric and symmetrical stretching vibrations, respectively, of the carboxymethyl group COO- in the carboxymethylated samples. Thermal analysis showed that native lasiodiplodan (LN) and carboxymethylated derivatives (LC) exhibited thermal stability up to 200–210 °C. X-ray diffractometry demonstrated that both native and carboxymethylated lasiodiplodan presented predominantly an amorphous nature. Scanning electron microscopy revealed that carboxymethylation promoted morphological changes in the biopolymer and increased porosity, and alveolar structures were observed along the surface. The introduction of carboxymethyl groups in the macromolecule promoted increased solubility and potentiated the hydroxyl radical-scavenging activity, suggesting a correlation between degree of substitution and antioxidant activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Beta Glucan)
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Review

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18 pages, 1014 KiB  
Review
A Concise Review on the Molecular Structure and Function Relationship of β-Glucan
by Bin Du, Maninder Meenu, Hongzhi Liu and Baojun Xu
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(16), 4032; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20164032 - 18 Aug 2019
Cited by 167 | Viewed by 13135
Abstract
β-glucan is a non-starch soluble polysaccharide widely present in yeast, mushrooms, bacteria, algae, barley, and oat. β-Glucan is regarded as a functional food ingredient due to its various health benefits. The high molecular weight (Mw) and high viscosity of β-glucan are responsible for [...] Read more.
β-glucan is a non-starch soluble polysaccharide widely present in yeast, mushrooms, bacteria, algae, barley, and oat. β-Glucan is regarded as a functional food ingredient due to its various health benefits. The high molecular weight (Mw) and high viscosity of β-glucan are responsible for its hypocholesterolemic and hypoglycemic properties. Thus, β-glucan is also used in the food industry for the production of functional food products. The inherent gel-forming property and high viscosity of β-glucan lead to the production of low-fat foods with improved textural properties. Various studies have reported the relationship between the molecular structure of β-glucan and its functionality. The structural characteristics of β-glucan, including specific glycosidic linkages, monosaccharide compositions, Mw, and chain conformation, were reported to affect its physiochemical and biological properties. Researchers have also reported some chemical, physical, and enzymatic treatments can successfully alter the molecular structure and functionalities of β-glucan. This review article attempts to review the available literature on the relationship of the molecular structure of β-glucan with its functionalities, and future perspectives in this area. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Beta Glucan)
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20 pages, 699 KiB  
Review
Yeast-Derived β-Glucan in Cancer: Novel Uses of a Traditional Therapeutic
by Anne Geller, Rejeena Shrestha and Jun Yan
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(15), 3618; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20153618 - 24 Jul 2019
Cited by 89 | Viewed by 16039
Abstract
An increased understanding of the complex mechanisms at play within the tumor microenvironment (TME) has emphasized the need for the development of strategies that target immune cells within the TME. Therapeutics that render the TME immune-reactive have a vast potential for establishing effective [...] Read more.
An increased understanding of the complex mechanisms at play within the tumor microenvironment (TME) has emphasized the need for the development of strategies that target immune cells within the TME. Therapeutics that render the TME immune-reactive have a vast potential for establishing effective cancer interventions. One such intervention is β-glucan, a natural compound with immune-stimulatory and immunomodulatory potential that has long been considered an important anti-cancer therapeutic. β-glucan has the ability to modulate the TME both by bridging the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system and by modulating the phenotype of immune-suppressive cells to be immune-stimulatory. New roles for β-glucan in cancer therapy are also emerging through an evolving understanding that β-glucan is involved in a concept called trained immunity, where innate cells take on memory phenotypes. Additionally, the hollow structure of particulate β-glucan has recently been harnessed to utilize particulate β-glucan as a delivery vesicle. These new concepts, along with the emerging success of combinatorial approaches to cancer treatment involving β-glucan, suggest that β-glucan may play an essential role in future strategies to prevent and inhibit tumor growth. This review emphasizes the various characteristics of β-glucan, with an emphasis on fungal β-glucan, and highlights novel approaches of β-glucan in cancer therapy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Beta Glucan)
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19 pages, 6252 KiB  
Review
Glucan and Mannan—Two Peas in a Pod
by Tatiana A. Korolenko, Nataliya P. Bgatova and Vaclav Vetvicka
Int. J. Mol. Sci. 2019, 20(13), 3189; https://doi.org/10.3390/ijms20133189 - 29 Jun 2019
Cited by 27 | Viewed by 5220
Abstract
In recent decades, various polysaccharides isolated from algae, mushrooms, yeast, and higher plants have attracted serious attention in the area of nutrition and medicine. The reasons include their low toxicity, rare negative side effects, relatively low price, and broad spectrum of therapeutic actions. [...] Read more.
In recent decades, various polysaccharides isolated from algae, mushrooms, yeast, and higher plants have attracted serious attention in the area of nutrition and medicine. The reasons include their low toxicity, rare negative side effects, relatively low price, and broad spectrum of therapeutic actions. The two most and best-studied polysaccharides are mannan and glucan. This review focused on their biological properties. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Effects of Beta Glucan)
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