Phase I clinical trial of oral curcumin: biomarkers of systemic activity and compliance.
ABSTRACT Curcumin, a polyphenolic antioxidant derived from a dietary spice, exhibits anticancer activity in rodents and in humans. Its efficacy appears to be related to induction of glutathione S-transferase enzymes, inhibition of prostaglandin E(2) (PGE(2)) production, or suppression of oxidative DNA adduct (M(1)G) formation. We designed a dose-escalation study to explore the pharmacology of curcumin in humans. Fifteen patients with advanced colorectal cancer refractory to standard chemotherapies consumed capsules compatible with curcumin doses between 0.45 and 3.6 g daily for up to 4 months. Levels of curcumin and its metabolites in plasma, urine, and feces were analyzed by high-pressure liquid chromatography and mass spectrometry. Three biomarkers of the potential activity of curcumin were translated from preclinical models and measured in patient blood leukocytes: glutathione S-transferase activity, levels of M(1)G, and PGE(2) production induced ex vivo. Dose-limiting toxicity was not observed. Curcumin and its glucuronide and sulfate metabolites were detected in plasma in the 10 nmol/L range and in urine. A daily dose of 3.6 g curcumin engendered 62% and 57% decreases in inducible PGE(2) production in blood samples taken 1 hour after dose on days 1 and 29, respectively, of treatment compared with levels observed immediately predose (P < 0.05). A daily oral dose of 3.6 g of curcumin is advocated for Phase II evaluation in the prevention or treatment of cancers outside the gastrointestinal tract. PGE(2) production in blood and target tissue may indicate biological activity. Levels of curcumin and its metabolites in the urine can be used to assess general compliance.
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ABSTRACT: Curcumin, a yellow pigment derived from Curcuma longa Linn, has attracted great interest in the research of cancer during the past decades. Extensive studies documented that curcumin attenuates cancer cell proliferation and promotes apoptosis in vivo and in vitro. Curcumin has been demonstrated to interact with multiple molecules and signal pathways, which makes it a potential adjuvant anti-cancer agent to chemotherapy. Previous investigations focus on the mechanisms of action for curcumin, which is shown to manipulate transcription factors and induce apoptosis in various kinds of human cancer. Apart from transcription factors and apoptosis, emerging studies shed light on latent targets of curcumin against epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR), microRNAs (miRNA), autophagy and cancer stem cell. The present review predominantly discusses significance of EGFR, miRNA, autophagy and cancer stem cell in lung cancer therapy. Curcumin as a natural phytochemicals could communicate with these novel targets and show synergism to chemotherapy. Additionally, curcumin is well tolerated in humans. Therefore, EGFR-, miRNA-, autophagy- and cancer stem cell-based therapy in the presence of curcumin might be promising mechanisms and targets in the therapeutic strategy of lung cancer.International Journal of Molecular Sciences 01/2012; 13(3):3959-78. · 2.60 Impact Factor
Article: Curcumin induces chemo/radio-sensitization in ovarian cancer cells and curcumin nanoparticles inhibit ovarian cancer cell growth.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Chemo/radio-resistance is a major obstacle in treating advanced ovarian cancer. The efficacy of current treatments may be improved by increasing the sensitivity of cancer cells to chemo/radiation therapies. Curcumin is a naturally occurring compound with anti-cancer activity in multiple cancers; however, its chemo/radio-sensitizing potential is not well studied in ovarian cancer. Herein, we demonstrate the effectiveness of a curcumin pre-treatment strategy for chemo/radio-sensitizing cisplatin resistant ovarian cancer cells. To improve the efficacy and specificity of curcumin induced chemo/radio sensitization, we developed a curcumin nanoparticle formulation conjugated with a monoclonal antibody specific for cancer cells. Cisplatin resistant A2780CP ovarian cancer cells were pre-treated with curcumin followed by exposure to cisplatin or radiation and the effect on cell growth was determined by MTS and colony formation assays. The effect of curcumin pre-treatment on the expression of apoptosis related proteins and beta-catenin was determined by Western blotting or Flow Cytometry. A luciferase reporter assay was used to determine the effect of curcumin on beta-catenin transcription activity. The poly(lactic acid-co-glycolic acid) (PLGA) nanoparticle formulation of curcumin (Nano-CUR) was developed by a modified nano-precipitation method and physico-chemical characterization was performed by transmission electron microscopy and dynamic light scattering methods. Curcumin pre-treatment considerably reduced the dose of cisplatin and radiation required to inhibit the growth of cisplatin resistant ovarian cancer cells. During the 6 hr pre-treatment, curcumin down regulated the expression of Bcl-XL and Mcl-1 pro-survival proteins. Curcumin pre-treatment followed by exposure to low doses of cisplatin increased apoptosis as indicated by annexin V staining and cleavage of caspase 9 and PARP. Additionally, curcumin pre-treatment lowered beta-catenin expression and transcriptional activity. Nano-CUR was successfully generated and physico-chemical characterization of Nano-CUR indicated an average particle size of ~70 nm, steady and prolonged release of curcumin, antibody conjugation capability and effective inhibition of ovarian cancer cell growth. Curcumin pre-treatment enhances chemo/radio-sensitization in A2780CP ovarian cancer cells through multiple molecular mechanisms. Therefore, curcumin pre-treatment may effectively improve ovarian cancer therapeutics. A targeted PLGA nanoparticle formulation of curcumin is feasible and may improve the in vivo therapeutic efficacy of curcumin.Journal of Ovarian Research 01/2010; 3:11. · 2.57 Impact Factor
Article: Curcumin: an anti-inflammatory molecule from a curry spice on the path to cancer treatment.[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Oxidative damage and inflammation have been pointed out in preclinical studies as the root cause of cancer and other chronic diseases such as diabetes, hypertension, Alzheimer's disease, etc. Epidemiological and clinical studies have suggested that cancer could be prevented or significantly reduced by treatment with anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory drugs, therefore, curcumin, a principal component of turmeric (a curry spice) showing strong anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory activities, might be a potential candidate for the prevention and/or treatment of cancer and other chronic diseases. However, curcumin, a highly pleiotropic molecule with an excellent safety profile targeting multiple diseases with strong evidence on the molecular level, could not achieve its optimum therapeutic outcome in past clinical trials, largely due to its low solubility and poor bioavailability. Curcumin can be developed as a therapeutic drug through improvement in formulation properties or delivery systems, enabling its enhanced absorption and cellular uptake. This review mainly focuses on the anti-inflammatory potential of curcumin and recent developments in dosage form and nanoparticulate delivery systems with the possibilities of therapeutic application of curcumin for the prevention and/or treatment of cancer.Molecules 01/2011; 16(6):4567-98. · 2.39 Impact Factor