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Greater Efficacy of Black Ginseng (CJ EnerG) over Red Ginseng against Lethal Influenza A Virus Infection

College of Medicine and Medical Research Institute, Chungbuk National University, Cheongju 28644, Korea
The Institutes of Food, CJ CheilJedang, Suwon 16495, Korea
ID Bio Corporation, Cheongju 28370, Korea
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(8), 1879;
Received: 28 June 2019 / Revised: 9 August 2019 / Accepted: 12 August 2019 / Published: 13 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Respiratory Disease and Nutrition)
PDF [4640 KB, uploaded 13 August 2019]


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. View Full-Text
Keywords: black ginseng; oral administration; influenza A virus; cytokines; antiviral black ginseng; oral administration; influenza A virus; cytokines; antiviral

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Kim, E.-H.; Kim, S.-W.; Park, S.-J.; Kim, S.; Yu, K.-M.; Kim, S.G.; Lee, S.H.; Seo, Y.-K.; Cho, N.-H.; Kang, K.; Soung, D.Y.; Choi, Y.-K. Greater Efficacy of Black Ginseng (CJ EnerG) over Red Ginseng against Lethal Influenza A Virus Infection. Nutrients 2019, 11, 1879.

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