Turmeric and curcumin: biological actions and medicinal applications

Chattopadhyay, Ishita ; Biswas, Kaushik ; Bandyopadhyay, Uday ; Banerjee, Ranajit K (2004) Turmeric and curcumin: biological actions and medicinal applications Current science, 87 (1). pp. 44-53. ISSN 0011-3891

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Abstract

Turmeric (Curcuma longa) is extensively used as a spice, food preservative and colouring material in India, China and South East Asia. It has been used in traditional medicine as a household remedy for various diseases, including biliary disorders, anorexia, cough, diabetic wounds, hepatic disorders, rheumatism and sinusitis. For the last few decades, extensive work has been done to establish the biological activities and pharmacological actions of turmeric and its extracts. Curcumin (diferuloylmethane), the main yellow bioactive component of turmeric has been shown to have a wide spectrum of biological actions. These include its antiinflammatory, antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antimutagenic, anticoagulant, antifertility, antidiabetic, antibacterial, antifungal, antiprotozoal, antiviral, antifibrotic, antivenom, antiulcer, hypotensive and hypocholesteremic activities. Its anticancer effect is mainly mediated through induction of apoptosis. Its antiinflammatory, anticancer and antioxidant roles may be clinically exploited to control rheumatism, carcinogenesis and oxidative stress-related pathogenesis. Clinically, curcumin has already been used to reduce post-operative inflammation. Safety evaluation studies indicate that both turmeric and curcumin are well tolerated at a very high dose without any toxic effects. Thus, both turmeric and curcumin have the potential for the development of modern medicine for the treatment of various diseases.

Item Type:Article
Source:Copyright of this article belongs to Current Science Association.
ID Code:5196
Deposited On:18 Oct 2010 12:13
Last Modified:16 Jun 2011 15:09

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