Oriveda’s Lions Mane Combi product contains the whole spectrum of Nerve Growth Factor NGF-stimulators in bioavailable form, and on top of that 30% of beta-D-glucans (for immune support). This is a great tool to battle age-related, declining health.
Overview of the NGF-stimulators found in Lion’s Mane. According to research, erinacines are the most important. These are only found in the mycelium, as is shown in this overview.
At the time of writing there are no alcohol-extracted Lion’s Mane pure mycelium products on the market, with Oriveda’s L+ as the only exception. Most products use mycelium grown on grains or rice (biomass). Such products are without exception contaminated with undigested grains/rice in the form of starch and because of that usually have a low therapeutic potential.If they list bioactive ingredients (such as polysaccharides), keep in mind starch is also a polysaccharide, but without therapeutic potential.
Only if a percentage of beta-glucans is also listed you can be sure you have a decent product, at least if you are after immune-supporting properties. Beta-glucans are not that relevant for NGF-boosting, but terpenes are.
Oriveda ‘s pharma-grade mycelium extract is currently the worlds first and only alcohol extract based on pure liquid-grown mycelium. The emphasis is on the alcohol-soluble terpenes / terpenoids; i.p. a group of diterpenes known as erinacines.
Erinacines are seen as the most powerful NGF-inducers in Lion’s Mane. They are only found in the mycelium. Oriveda used a special formula for the liquid substrate in which the mycelium is growing; its purpose is to increase the production of erinacines, I.p. erinacine A.
NGF is a secreted protein that is important for the growth, maintenance, survival and regeneration of nerve cells in the human body, and is considered critical for their survival. Without it, these nerve cells / neurons will decline and die, causing both cognitive and motoric problems. The NGF was discovered in the 1950s, and in 1986 the scientists responsible received the Nobel Prize for this.
NGF is slowing down or reducing the degeneration of nerve cells such as caused by aging and neurodegenerative diseases (e.g. Alzheimer’s).
Unfortunately, the NGF production itself is declining with age as well and science so far has not been able to come up with an answer for that. Neurodegenerative diseases, spinal cord injuries and other nerve-related injuries affect approximately 50 million people worldwide, bringing the total related healthcare cost to over 600 billion dollars (estimate) per year.
Three out of five human case studies were using non-extracted dried Lion’s Mane fruiting body powder; the two most recent clinical studies (2019/2020) used pure mycelium.
Concentrated water extracts are not in line with LM research because all non-soluble matter was filtered out, including the NGF-inducing terpenes, sterols and other interesting bioactive compounds. They are only relevant if you are after immune support, healthy levels of cholesterol and gut-health.
The clinical studies noticed significant effects on cognition, moderate depression and anxiety. When fruiting bodies are used, hericenones are usually pointed out as being responsible for the NGF-inducing effects. However, there is also research explicitly stating that hericenones have zero effect on cognition / NGF-induction. Very confusing !
So it is possible there might be other yet unknown bioactive compounds or synergetic combinations of compounds responsible for the observed effects. It therefore makes sense to use an unfiltered 1:1 full-spectrum extract in this case; all fruiting body compounds are present in a bioavailable form.