Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance, smoldering multiple myeloma, and curcumin: A randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled cross-over 4g study and an open-label 8g extension study

Department of Endocrinology, St George Hospital, Sydney, Australia.
American Journal of Hematology (Impact Factor: 3.8). 05/2012; 87(5):455-60. DOI: 10.1002/ajh.23159
Source: PubMed


Monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) and smoldering multiple myeloma (SMM) represent useful models for studying multiple myeloma precursor disease, and for developing early intervention strategies. Administering a 4g dose of curcumin, we performed a randomised, double-blind placebo-controlled cross-over study, followed by an open-label extension study using an 8g dose to assess the effect of curcumin on FLC response and bone turnover in patients with MGUS and SMM. 36 patients (19 MGUS and 17 SMM) were randomised into two groups: one received 4g curcumin and the other 4g placebo, crossing over at 3 months. At completion of the 4g arm, all patients were given the option of entering an open-label, 8g dose extension study. Blood and urine samples were collected at specified intervals for specific marker analyses. Group values are expressed as mean ± 1 SD. Data from different time intervals within groups were compared using Student's paired t-test. 25 patients completed the 4g cross-over study and 18 the 8g extension study. Curcumin therapy decreased the free light-chain ratio (rFLC), reduced the difference between clonal and nonclonal light-chain (dFLC) and involved free light-chain (iFLC). uDPYD, a marker of bone resorption, decreased in the curcumin arm and increased on the placebo arm. Serum creatinine levels tended to diminish on curcumin therapy. These findings suggest that curcumin might have the potential to slow the disease process in patients with MGUS and SMM.

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Available from: Terrence H Diamond, Oct 13, 2014
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    • "Curcumin has been shown to inhibit the proliferation of a wide variety of tumor cells, including multiple myeloma cells through the downregulation of IL-6 and NF-í µí¼…B [5]. Studies by Golombick et al. [6] [7] [8] [9] have found that curcumin decreases paraprotein load, bone turnover, free light chains, and % plasma cells in the bone marrow of some MGUS and smoldering myeloma patients. In addition to the beneficial effects noted above, it has been suggested that curcumin may have beneficial effects on diseases characterized by the formation of aggregated fibrillar protein deposits [10]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Multiple myeloma (MM), smoldering myeloma (SMM), and monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance (MGUS) represent a spectrum of plasma cell dyscrasias (PCDs). Immunoglobulin light chain amyloidosis (AL) falls within the spectrum of these diseases and has a mortality rate of more than 80% within 2 years of diagnosis. Curcumin, derived from turmeric, has been shown to have a clinical benefit in some patients with PCDs. In addition to a clinical benefit in these patients, curcumin has been found to have a strong affinity for fibrillar amyloid proteins. We thus administered curcumin to a patient with laryngeal amyloidosis and smoldering myeloma and found that the patient has shown a lack of progression of his disease for a period of five years. This is in keeping with our previous findings of clinical benefits of curcumin in patients with plasma cell dyscrasias. We recommend further evaluation of curcumin in patients with primary AL amyloidosis.
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    ABSTRACT: Over the last decades there has been an increasing interest in a possible role of curcumin on cancer. Although curcumin is considered safe for healthy people, conclusive evidence on the safety and efficacy of curcumin for patients with monoclonal gammopathies is, so far, lacking. The present paper reviews the literature on molecular, cellular and clinical effects of curcumin in an attempt to identify, reasons for optimism but also for concern. The results of this critical evaluation can be useful for both patient- selection and monitoring in the context of clinical trials. Curcumin might be helpful for some but certainly not for all patients with monoclonal gammopathies. It is important to avoid unnecessary detrimental side effects in some in order to safeguard curcumin for those that could benefit. Parameters for patient monitoring, that can be used as early warning signs and as indicators of a favorable development have therefore been suggested.
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