"Judas's ear" name comes from
the legend that Auricularia formed its ear-shaped fruiting body as a
curse on the tree that Judas hanged himself after his betrayal of Jesus.
Taingan-daga is a saprophytic fungus, growing in tree
stumps in damp moist forests. Plant is formed by multi-celled hyphae
extracting nutrients from decaying tree trunks or logged timber. Spores
extending from the tree trunk are shaped like human ear, of variable
sizes, smooth, dull brown to gray,sticky when moist, leathery when dry.
Auricularia is found throughout
the Philippines. Other than the auricula-judae species, another
specie reported edible is Auricularia
In damp moist forests.
- Yields a high content of carbohydrates (approximately 63% of dried fruit bodies), proteins and minerals (Ca, P, and Fe). (21)
- Main monosaccharide composition of A. auricula polysaccharides is glucose (72%), mannose (8%), xylose (10%), and fructose (10%). (21)
- Main components of the cultivated fungus are ash 4.6%, protein 12.5%, fat 1.7%, carbohydrates 66.1% per dry matter. Gas liquid chromatography yielded a monosaccharide composition of dry biomass: glucose 15.0%, mannos 10.7%, xylose 1.5%, galactose 0.6%. It is a good source of all essential amino acids (34.7% of total) with the umami taste typical of mushrooms. It has an average calorific value of 327.7 kcal/100 g of dry matter. (25)
Neutral, pleasant tasting.
- Considered an immune
Antitumor, hypolipidemic, antiviral,
antibacterial, antiparasitic, and of cardiovascular benefit.
Edibility / Culinary
- An edible black-brown mushroom.
Imported in dry state from China and
Japan. A popular ingredient for chop-suey, hot and sour soup, sotanghon, pinsic, etc.
- Used for metrorrhagia, urinary tract
- Used for bleeding hemorrhoids, dropsy and sore throat.
- In Chinese traditional
medicine, used for weakness after childbirth, cramps, numbness,dysentery,
piles, enteritis, heavy menstrual bleeding, leucorrhea.
- In Ghana, used as blood tonic.
(1) Study on mice reports of a 3% polysaccharide extract reducing the
fasting blood glucose. Another found the crude polysaccharide improved
glucose tolerance to intraperitoneal glucose loading; and neutral polysaccharides
showed dose-dependent lowering of fasting and nonfasting glucose and
insulin.(2) Study showed the hypoglycemic effect of a water-soluble
polysaccharide from the fruiting body of AA on genetically diabetic
Study showed hypocholesterolemic effect in rats, lowering the total
and LDL cholesterol without affecting the HDL concentration. (3)
• Anticoagulant Activity:
Study isolated an acidic polysaccharide from the edible mushroom AA,
with the alkali extract showing highest anticoagulant activity. The effect
was through an inhibition of platelet aggregation. (2)
• Antioxidant Activity / Hypocholesterolemic:
Study showed lowering of total and LDL cholesterol and triglyceride
levels and increased total antioxidant capacity. (6)
• Anticomplement Activity:
Study of exo-polymer of AA showed a 70%-anti-complementary activity. (4)
• Auricularia auricula Polysaccharide Flour / Antioxidant:
Study showed that up to 9% of Auricularia auricula polysaccharide flour could be included in bread formulation without altering the sensory acceptance of the blended flour at the same time markedly increasing the antioxidant property of the bread. Breads containing AAP may be regarded as health-promoting functional foods. (7)
• Anti-Tumor Activity:
Study compared the antitumor activities of two (1 goes to 3)-beta-D-glucans isolated from the fruiting body of Auricularia auricula-judae. (8)
Study investigated the hypolipidemic effect of biopolymers extracted from culture broth, mycelia, and fruiting bodies (FB) of AAJ in dietary-induced hyperlipidemic rats. Administration of FB reduced triglycerides, TC, LDL cholesterol and the atherogenic index while also increasing the HDL cholesterol. (9)
• Cerebral Ischemia/Reperfusion Injury Protection:
Auricularia auricula-judea polysaccharide (AAP) treatment protected rat brain from focal ischemia/reperfusion injury by its anti-oxidative effect and worked better than EGb671. AAP treatment decreased Longa's score, brain infarct size, apoptotic neurons and mitochondria-generated ROS in a dose-dependent manner. (10)
• Comparative Anti-Tumor Activity: Study compared the antitumor activity of extracts from Auricularia auricula-judae, P. gilvus, G. lucidum and 100 Korean wild plants in the P388D1 macrophage cell line. Results showed four plant extracts (4% of tested wild plants and A. auricula-judae extract with similar levels of Ph. gilvus and G. lucidum extracts may be potential antitumor agents. (12)
• Inhibition of Tumor Cell Growth In-Vitro: A dichlormethane fraction from 70% Auricularia auricula-judae ethanol extract showed the highest level of antitumor activity compared to other solvent fractions. The DCMF was found to have more potent antitumor activity against bronchoalveolar cancer and gastric cancer cells. Results demonstrate the DCMF has a potential as functional additive for enhancing antioxidant activities and suppressing tumor growth in the body. (13)
• Anti-Inflammatory: Study investigated the anti-inflammatory effects of a dichlormethane extract of A. auricula-judae. Results showed significant inhibition of lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced nitric oxide (NO) production in a dose-dependent manner. The extract markedly reduced the expressions of inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, TNF-α, and IL-ß) mRNA in LPS-treated murine RAW264-7 macrophages. (14)
• Antioxidant / Functional Formula Diet: Study investigated the antioxidant activities and protective effects of a functional formula diet AHP, containing polysaccharides from Auricularia auricula, polyphenolic compounds from Hawthorn and Pueraria radix. Results showed the AHP possessed potent radical-scavenging effects and inhibitory effects against peroxidation of LDL induced by Cu in vitro. Results suggest the functional formula diet could be a potent alternative as a functional diet to prevent atherosclerosis at early stage. (15)
• Polysaccharide Antithrombotic Effect: Study evaluated the antithrombotic effect of polysaccharide of Auriclaria auricula-judae. Results showed polysaccharides of A. auricula-judae can significantly inhibit the formation of thrombus, with marked prolongation of CTFT (characteristic thrombus formation time) and TFT (thrombus formation time). (16)
• Blood Lipids and Bone Density Effect in Middle Aged Obese Women: Study demonstrated consumption of A. auricula-judae had a positive effect in improving blood LDL-cholesterol, triglycerides, and bone density of middle-aged obese women. (18)
• Exercise Endurance Effects: Study evaluated the effects of polysaccharide from AAJ on exercise-induced oxidative stress in mice. Results showed polysaccharides from Auricularia auricula-judae enhance exercise endurance and possess protective effects against exhaustive swimming exercise-induced oxidative stress in mice. (19)
• Fruiting Bodies Melanin / Natural Colorant: Study evaluated the physiochemical properties of melanin from Aa fruiting bodies. The melanin showed to be dark with a little red and yellow, with properties similar to those of synthetic melanin and same redox properties of natural melanins previously reported. Results suggest a potential for fruiting body melanin to be used in the food industry as a natural colorant. (20)
• Wound Healing Effect / Polysaccharides: Study evaluated the wound healing promoting effect of polysaccharides purified from T. fuciformis and Auricularia auricula on an ex-vivo porcine skin wound healing model. Results clearly showed both purified polysaccharide extracts promoted a significant wound healing effect. (21)
• Antimicrobial / Antioxidant: Study evaluated crude polysaccharides of Auriclaria auricula-judae for antimicrobial and antioxidant activity. Results showed great antimicrobial activity against E. coli and S. aureus. The crude extract also showed significant antioxidant activities in scavenging free radicals, reducing power assays, and Fe2+ chelating ability assays. (22)
• Production of Natural Melanin: Study evaluated the production of melanin by Auricularia auricula. The highest mycelial growth rate was observed in low-carbon and carbon-free medium. Eumelanin yielded 6 main components viz. phenolic hydroxyl, carboxyl, amidogen, carbonyl, methylene, methyne and sulfur. Results suggest nutritional control is essential to promote melanin production and to make it affordable as material in food, cosmetics, and medicines. (23)
• Antioxidant / Antivira / Anti-HPV: Study evaluated the antioxidant, cytotoxicity, and anti-HPV-16E6 activities. Hot aqueous extract sowed the most potent DPPH radical scavenging activity with highest total phenolic content of 56.89 mg GAE/g of extract. Various extracts showed no cytotoxicity against cancer cell lines tested. All extracts suppressed the expression of HPV-16$6 oncoprotein. Results suggest a potential in the treatment and prevention of cervical cancer caused by high risk HPV. (24)
• Antitumor Activity / Acidic Heteropolysaccharide / wAF: Study isolated a water soluble acidic heteropolysaccharide, wAF. Fractions of wAF exhibited strong inhibition of Acinar cell carcinoma proliferation in vitro and significantly inhibited tumor growth in BALB/c mice in a dose-dependent manner.
Results showed wAF3 induced S-180 tumor cell apoptosis by up-regulation of Bax and down-regulation of Bcl-2. (26)
Prebiotic Properties of ß-Glucan and Oligo-ß-Glucan: Among 8 mushrooms studies, Schizophylum commune and Auricularia auricula showed the highest ß-glucan contents and cheapest cost of mushroom per content of ß-glucan. Study showed ß-glucan from mushroom may have potential prebiotic function similar to those of commercial yeast (Saccharomyces cerevisiae) ß-glucan. (27)
• Quorum Sensing Inhibition of E. coli Biofilm: Study on inhibitory effect of Au. auricula extracts on biofilm of Escherichia coli showed an inhibition rate of 73 (Li and Dong, 2010). (28)
• Fermentative Production of Melanin: Study reports on a low cost and efficient fermentative production of melanin from fungus Auricularia auricula using wheat bran extract as major nutrient source. Results showed wheat bran extract, L-tyrosine and CuSO4 concentrations influenced tyrosinase activity and increase melanin yield. Highest melanin yielded was 519.54 mg/L. (29)
• Antioxidant / Anti-Proliferative: Study evaluated three edible mushrooms (Auricularia auricula-judae, Pleurotus abalonus and Pleurotus sajor-caju for antioxidative and anti-proliferative effects on leukemia cells. All mushroom extracts showed antioxidant effects, with dose-dependent anti-proliferative effects. The Auricularia auricula extract showed the highest potency. (30)
• Antioxidant / Nitric Oxide Synthase Activation Properties: In vitro study of A. auricula showed significant inhibition of lipid peroxidation
and potent hydroxyl radical scavenging activity compared with standard catechin. Ethanolic extract showed significant increase in NOS activity. (31)
• Ameliorating Effect of Water Soluble Polysaccharides: Study confirms the ameliorating effects of water-soluble polysaccharides from A. auricular-judae in KK-A mice and confirms the beneficial effects on glycemic control and food intake contributed by water-soluble neutral polysaccharides, but not water-soluble acidic polysaccharides. WSP may be the good dietary fiber source in dietary management of NIDDM. (32)
• Antioxidant / Total Phenol and Flavonoid Content: Study of hot water extract showed A. auricula mushrooms are good scavengers of of ABTS, DMPD radicals, reducers of ferric ions and inhibitor of lipid peroxidation and erythrocyte hemolysis. Total phenol and flavonoid content were 8.94 mg CE/g and 3.49 mg RE/g, respectively. (33)
• Ant-Tumor Effects of Polysaccharides: Study evaluated the antitumor activities of two (1 goes to 3)-beta-D-glucans, isolated from the fruiting body of A. auricula-judae and other branched polysaccharides. The water-soluble, branched (1 goes to 3)-beta-D-glucan, a major constituent of the fruiting body, showed potent inhibitory activity against implanted Sarcoma 180 solid tumor in mice. (34)