The Role of Curcumin in Cancer Treatment

PMID: 34572272
Journal: Biomedicines (volume: 9, issue: 9, Biomedicines 2021 Aug;9(9))
Published: 2021-08-26

Zoi V, Galani V, Lianos GD, Voulgaris S, Kyritsis AP, Alexiou GA


Curcumin is a polyphenol extracted from the rhizomes of the turmeric plant, which has anti-inflammatory, and anticancer properties. Chronic inflammation is associated with the development of cancer. Curcumin acts on the regulation of various immune modulators, including cytokines, cyclooxygenase-2 (COX-2), and reactive oxygen species (ROS), which partly explains its anticancer effects. It also takes part in the downregulation of growth factors, protein kinases, oncogenic molecules and various signaling pathways, such as nuclear factor kappa-light-chain-enhancer of activated B cells (NF-κB), c-Jun N-terminal kinase (JNK) and signal transducer and activator of transcription 3 (STAT3) signaling. Clinical trials of curcumin have been completed or are ongoing for various types of cancer. This review presents the molecular mechanisms of curcumin in different types of cancer and the evidence from the most recent clinical trials.