Greater Efficacy of Black Ginseng (CJ EnerG) over Red Ginseng against Lethal Influenza A Virus Infection.
Nutrients. 2019 Aug 13 ;11(8). Epub 2019 Aug 13. PMID: 31412594
Black ginseng (BG, CJ EnerG), prepared via nine repeated cycles of steaming and drying of fresh ginseng, contains more accessible acid polysaccharides and smaller and less polar ginsenosides than red ginseng (RG) processed only once. Because RG exhibits the ability to increase host protection against viral respiratory infections, we investigated the antiviral effects of BG. Mice were orally administered either BG or RG extract at 10 mg/kg bw daily for two weeks. Mice were then infected with a A(H1N1) pdm09 (A/California/04/2009) virus and fed extracts for an additional week. Untreated, infected mice were assigned to either the negative control, without treatments, or the positive control, treated with Tamiflu. Infected mice were monitored for 14 days to determine the survival rate. Lung tissues were evaluated for virus titer and by histological analyses. Cytokine levels were measured in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. Mice treated with BG displayed a 100% survival rate against infection, while mice treated with RG had a 50% survival rate. Further, mice treated with BG had fewer accumulated inflammatory cells in bronchioles following viral infection than did mice treated with RG. BG also enhanced the levels of GM-CSF and IL-10 during the early and late stages of infection, respectively, compared to RG. Thus, BG may be useful as an alternative antiviral adjuvant to modulate immune responses to influenza A virus.