Nutrachampion podcast episode 28

Finding the ‘perfect fit’: How beta-glucan could serve as immune modulating adjunctive for diseases – LISTEN

This content item was originally published on, a William Reed online publication.

By Tingmin Koe

- Last updated on GMT

PODCAST: Beta-glucan as immune modulating adjunctive treatment

Related tags Podcast COVID-19 Beta-glucan

Beta-glucans have the potential to serve as an adjunctive for a range of chronic, inflammatory diseases, alongside its recently documented benefits for COVID-19 patients, a R&D chief has revealed.

Dr Samuel JK Abraham is the head of R&D at Japan’s GN Corporation which focuses on regenerative medicine and immune enhancement as well as immune modulation solutions.

Dr Samuel JK Abraham
Dr Samuel JK Abraham

He is also the founder and director at the Nichi-In Centre for Regenerative Medicine in India and holds a lecturer position at the University of Yamanashi, Centre for Advancing Clinical Research.

One of his most prominent research is on the effects of Black yeast (Aureobasidium Pullulans​)-derived beta-glucan on addressing COVID-19 symptoms.

The latest findings​ showed that COVID-19 patients who were supplemented with beta-glucans derived from Aureobasidium Pullulans ​AFO-202 and N-163 strains while on the standard treatment saw a greater reduction in inflammatory biomarkers such as IL-6.

The company started researching on beta-glucans when it was exploring simpler immune enhancement therapy for cancer patients.

GN Corporation has been working on biomaterials developed in Japan, cell-based therapies, regenerative medicine, so one of the components that we have been working on has been immune cell therapies for cancer patients.

“When we were researching on this, I was looking for a much simpler way where you can not only treat cancer, but you can also use it as a prophylaxis. So that should be a product which should increase your immune production, immune enhancement as a barrier of entry to infections as well as the development of cancer.

“We also are looking into something which will control unwanted immune enhancement, so immune system should work optimally, but it's not overactive. So that is why we focused on these particular variant strains of beta glucans which is a perfect fit for our research,” ​he recalled.

As a physician trained in paediatric cardiac surgery​, he said that his research in regenerative medicines or supplements as adjunctive treatment would focus on unmet needs.

“As a physician, I would like to focus on unmet needs, for example, there is a general lifestyle disease or metabolic syndrome. There are drugs that are protocol, preventive, prophylactic methodologies available, but in conditions like neurological illnesses, especially in case of children's disability, there are not many interventions which are definitely curable, treatable, available. So there, there is a big vacuum here,” ​he said.

For instance, he has already embarked on research involving beta-glucan and autism as well as addressing inflammation related to muscular dystrophy.

Listen to find out more.

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