Curcuma and Cancer
Answered by: Conrad Richter
Question from: Sue
Posted on: July 18, 2005

I heard on Paul Harvey that some Texas Univ. said that India’s herb Curcumin might help fight Cancer. Have you heard any thing like that?

The herb is turmeric and the substance with the anti-cancer properties is curcumin. There is a new report that suggests that indeed curcumin has this property. Here is a short press report about the research:

The Daily Rx TIME’s notes on health and medicine

Can Curry Help Against Cancer?

Curry may have other benefits besides those found at your local Indian restaurant. According to a new study to be published in the August 15, 2005 issue of CANCER, curcumin, the yellow pigment found in the spice turmeric, which is an ingredient yellow curry powder, inhibits cell growth in melanoma, an especially virulent form of skin cancer that killed more than 7,000 Americans in 2002 alone.

Researchers at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center administered varied doses of curcumin to three lines of melanoma cells for different lengths of time. The result: apoptosis, a process that causes the normally immortal cancer cells to die like ordinary cells. And it happened whether the cells got a high dose of curcumin for a short time or a low dose for a long time.

How does curcumin stimulate apoptosis? It appears to work by suppressing two proteins in the cancer cells that would ordinarily block the process; curcumin is a sort of molecular double-negative. The researchers believe that curcumin could kill cancer cells, not just in test tubes, but in actual tumors, and they’re now preparing for animal testing.and, if that’s successful, for clinical trials in humans.

By Carolyn Banta | Posted July 12, 2005

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