Investigating the Potential Influence of Ganoderma lucidium on Gastrointestinal Functionality and Immune Status of Goats

Project Overview

Project Type: Graduate Student
Funds awarded in 2023: $16,500.00
Projected End Date: 08/31/2025
Grant Recipient: University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff
Region: Southern
State: Arkansas
Graduate Student:
Major Professor:
Dr. Emmanuel Asiamah
University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff


  • Animals: goats


  • Animal Production: animal protection and health, parasite control

    Proposal abstract:

    Current disease control programs in livestock, based on anthelmintics and antimicrobial administration, fail due to their reduced effectiveness and resistance in animals. Due to the shortcomings of traditional methods for controlling diseases, a more natural and sustainable way of disease prevention is being explored. Recent studies have shown that some mushrooms possess beneficial health properties, which may improve livestock's immune status if incorporated into their feed regimen. Ganoderma Lucidium is a well-known medicinal mushroom and traditional Chinese medicine, which has been reported to possess immunomodulatory, antioxidant, antitumor, and antiangiogenic properties.

    The present study will investigate the effect of Ganoderma Lucidium (GL)supplementation on immune gene expression, microbial DNA expression, fecal egg count, and overall health status in Spanish X Savannah goats. Ten adult female Spanish X Savannah goats (n=10) will receive a daily dose (10g) of a GL for 60 days. The control group will receive no GL. (n=10). Data on body weight, physical condition, and FAMACHA scores will be taken each week. Blood (10 ml) and fecal samples(2g) will be collected from the animals on days 0, 30, and 60. Blood samples will be used to assess packed cell volume, differential white blood cell counts, and RNA extraction for downstream gene expression profiling(RT-PCR). Using ELISA, blood plasma will be used to evaluate cytokine concentrations, acute phase proteins, and secretory IgA. Fecal samples will be used for fecal egg count and isolation of microbial DNA.

    Project objectives from proposal:

    General objectives

    To contribute to the reduction of animal and foodborne related diseases by using natural immunomodulators such as Ganoderma Lucidium to improve gastrointestinal functionality and immune status of goats. The aim is to provide the farmer with a cost-effective, eco-friendly means to help reduce, if not prevent, the incidence of disease in their herd. This project will broadly contribute to efforts to make livestock production safer and more sustainable.

     Specific objectives

    1. To investigate the effect of daily Ganoderma Lucidium intake on gastrointestinal functionality in goats. This will be determined by assessing the gastrointestinal functionality index biomarkers (Myloperoxidase, Lipocalin 2, Lactoferrin, cytokines, and secretory IgA) in both blood and fecal sample.
    2. To investigate the effect of daily supplementation of Ganoderma Lucidium on systemic innate immune response activation in goats. Since Toll-like receptors trigger the innate immunity response, this will be determined by assessing genes involved in the TLR pathway (TLR2, TLR4, NFKB1, tumor necrosis factor-Alpha (TNG-α) and cytokine secretion (IL-6, IL-8, IL10, IL 12, IL-1β, CCL3, CCL5), in blood.
    3. To investigate whether daily supplementation of Ganoderma Lucidium reduces oxidative stress by promoting antioxidant production in goat blood.
    Any opinions, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the view of the U.S. Department of Agriculture or SARE.