VINIF.2021.DA00157 – Studying molecular mechanisms of Cordyceps militaris degeneration and cordycepin biosynthesis, and illuminating the efficacy of cordycepin on post-ischemic stroke treatment

Principle Investigator
Dr. Hoang Quoc Chinh
Host Organization
National Center for Technological Progress, Ministry of Science and Technology

Project goals

General goal: Develop medicine to prevent and/or support stroke treatment from the Cordyceps militaris medicinal mushroom.
Detail goal:
(i) Determine the molecular mechanism of the seed degeneration phenomenon of C. militaris mushroom to increase the economic efficiency of the C. militaris mushroom growing process
(ii) Identify the mechanism that controls the biosynthesis of the active ingredient cordycepin in C. militaris to increase cordycepin yield.
(iii) Evaluate the pharmacological effects and mechanism of action of cordycepin in the treatment of ischemic stroke in experimental animals to create premise for clinical trial research.

Project impact

Understanding the molecular mechanism of the degenerative process in C. militaris will be useful scientific information that contributes to elucidating the aging mechanism of living organisms.
Natural active ingredients such as cordycepin have many potential applications in improving human health. However, the content of this active ingredient obtained in nature is very low because the genes encoding the enzymes that synthesize them are often inhibited. Therefore, understanding the mechanism controlling cordycepin biosynthesis will contribute to expanding scientific knowledge about the biosynthesis of natural compounds.
Evaluating the pharmacological effects of cordycepin in stroke treatment and its mechanism of action will open up a new approach to stroke control, helping to reduce the socio-economic burden caused by stroke.
Thus, it can be seen that in addition to scientific contributions, the success of the project will contribute to increasing C. militaris biomass productivity and cordycepin active ingredient content, helping to lower product prices and increase the number of consumers. Besides, the socio-economic burden caused by chronic diseases can also be improved through regular use of C. militaris or/and cordycepin. Therefore, promoting the C. militaris farming and processing industry is a potential and sustainable economic development direction.

Principle Investigator
Dr. Hoang Quoc Chinh
Host Organization
National Center for Technological Progress, Ministry of Science and Technology


Expect Progress
Phase 1

– Morphological characteristics of C. militaris at different time points during the degeneration process.
– DNA and RNA samples at characteristic time points of the degeneration process.
– Cultivation conditions aimed at enhancing or inhibiting cordycepin biosynthesis.
– DNA/RNA samples of C. militaris cultivated under corresponding conditions.
– Sequencing library.
(2) Extraction process for obtaining cordycepin-rich extract.

Phase 2

(1) Report on the molecular mechanisms of the degeneration process and cordycepin biosynthesis.
(2) Process for manufacturing capsule containing cordycepin.
(3) 10,000 capsules containing ≥ 3mg of cordycepin per capsule.
(4) Report on:
– The therapeutic effects of cordycepin on stroke.
– Optimal treatment dosage.

Phase 3

(1) Report on the mechanism of cordycepin in treating stroke.
(2) Patent or notification of acceptance and/or evidence of receiving the request for intellectual property content evaluation from the authorized intellectual property agency and the search results for patentability from legally operating organizations or agencies.
(3) Submission/acceptance of Q1 paper for publication.