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      The Chemistry of Curcumin: From Extraction to Therapeutic Agent

      review-article
      Molecules
      MDPI
      curcumin, extraction, synthesis, degradation, metal chelation, nanoformulation

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          Abstract

          Curcumin, a pigment from turmeric, is one of the very few promising natural products that has been extensively investigated by researchers from both the biological and chemical point of view. While there are several reviews on the biological and pharmacological effects of curcumin, chemistry reviews are comparatively scarcer. In this article, an overview of different aspects of the unique chemistry research on curcumin will be discussed. These include methods for the extraction from turmeric, laboratory synthesis methods, chemical and photochemical degradation and the chemistry behind its metabolism. Additionally other chemical reactions that have biological relevance like nucleophilic addition reactions, and metal chelation will be discussed. Recent advances in the preparation of new curcumin nanoconjugates with metal and metal oxide nanoparticles will also be mentioned. Directions for future investigations to be undertaken in the chemistry of curcumin have also been suggested.

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          Most cited references97

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          Curcumin: A review of anti-cancer properties and therapeutic activity in head and neck squamous cell carcinoma

          Curcumin (diferuloylmethane) is a polyphenol derived from the Curcuma longa plant, commonly known as turmeric. Curcumin has been used extensively in Ayurvedic medicine for centuries, as it is nontoxic and has a variety of therapeutic properties including anti-oxidant, analgesic, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic activity. More recently curcumin has been found to possess anti-cancer activities via its effect on a variety of biological pathways involved in mutagenesis, oncogene expression, cell cycle regulation, apoptosis, tumorigenesis and metastasis. Curcumin has shown anti-proliferative effect in multiple cancers, and is an inhibitor of the transcription factor NF-κB and downstream gene products (including c-myc, Bcl-2, COX-2, NOS, Cyclin D1, TNF-α, interleukins and MMP-9). In addition, curcumin affects a variety of growth factor receptors and cell adhesion molecules involved in tumor growth, angiogenesis and metastasis. Head and neck squamous cell carcinoma (HNSCC) is the sixth most common cancer worldwide and treatment protocols include disfiguring surgery, platinum-based chemotherapy and radiation, all of which may result in tremendous patient morbidity. As a result, there is significant interest in developing adjuvant chemotherapies to augment currently available treatment protocols, which may allow decreased side effects and toxicity without compromising therapeutic efficacy. Curcumin is one such potential candidate, and this review presents an overview of the current in vitro and in vivo data supporting its therapeutic activity in head and neck cancer as well as some of the challenges concerning its development as an adjuvant chemotherapeutic agent.
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            Multitargeting by curcumin as revealed by molecular interaction studies.

            Curcumin (diferuloylmethane), the active ingredient in turmeric (Curcuma longa), is a highly pleiotropic molecule with anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, chemopreventive, chemosensitization, and radiosensitization activities. The pleiotropic activities attributed to curcumin come from its complex molecular structure and chemistry, as well as its ability to influence multiple signaling molecules. Curcumin has been shown to bind by multiple forces directly to numerous signaling molecules, such as inflammatory molecules, cell survival proteins, protein kinases, protein reductases, histone acetyltransferase, histone deacetylase, glyoxalase I, xanthine oxidase, proteasome, HIV1 integrase, HIV1 protease, sarco (endo) plasmic reticulum Ca(2+) ATPase, DNA methyltransferases 1, FtsZ protofilaments, carrier proteins, and metal ions. Curcumin can also bind directly to DNA and RNA. Owing to its β-diketone moiety, curcumin undergoes keto-enol tautomerism that has been reported as a favorable state for direct binding. The functional groups on curcumin found suitable for interaction with other macromolecules include the α, β-unsaturated β-diketone moiety, carbonyl and enolic groups of the β-diketone moiety, methoxy and phenolic hydroxyl groups, and the phenyl rings. Various biophysical tools have been used to monitor direct interaction of curcumin with other proteins, including absorption, fluorescence, Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) and circular dichroism (CD) spectroscopy, surface plasmon resonance, competitive ligand binding, Forster type fluorescence resonance energy transfer (FRET), radiolabeling, site-directed mutagenesis, matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass spectrometry (MALDI-TOF MS), immunoprecipitation, phage display biopanning, electron microscopy, 1-anilino-8-naphthalene-sulfonate (ANS) displacement, and co-localization. Molecular docking, the most commonly employed computational tool for calculating binding affinities and predicting binding sites, has also been used to further characterize curcumin's binding sites. Furthermore, the ability of curcumin to bind directly to carrier proteins improves its solubility and bioavailability. In this review, we focus on how curcumin directly targets signaling molecules, as well as the different forces that bind the curcumin-protein complex and how this interaction affects the biological properties of proteins. We will also discuss various analogues of curcumin designed to bind selective targets with increased affinity.
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              A study on the fate of curcumin in the rat.

              The uptake, distribution and excretion of curcumin in Sprague-Dawley rats has been studied. When administered orally in a dose of 1 g/kg, curcumin was excreted in the faeces to about 75%, while negligible amounts of curcumin appeared in the urine. Measurements of blood plasma levels and biliary excretion showed that curcumin was poorly absorbed from the gut. No apparent toxic effects were seen after doses of up to 5 g/kg. When intravenously injected or when added to the perfusate of the isolated liver, curcumin was actively transported into bile, against concentration gradients of several hundred times. The major part of the drug was however metabolized. In suspensions of isolated hepatocytes or liver microsomes 90% of the added curcumin was metabolized within 30 min. In view of the poor absorption, rapid metabolism and excretion of curcumin, it is unlikely that substantial concentrations of curcumin occur in the body after ingestion.
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                Author and article information

                Contributors
                Role: External Editor
                Journal
                Molecules
                Molecules
                molecules
                Molecules
                MDPI
                1420-3049
                01 December 2014
                December 2014
                : 19
                : 12
                : 20091-20112
                Affiliations
                Radiation & Photochemistry Division, Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Mumbai 400085, India; E-Mail: kindira@ 123456barc.gov.in ; Tel.: +91-22-25595399
                Article
                molecules-19-20091
                10.3390/molecules191220091
                6270789
                25470276
                a0c59b87-9df4-4a51-ae7f-69fdf8c55eb4
                © 2014 by the authors.

                Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution license ( http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

                History
                : 13 October 2014
                : 25 October 2014
                : 24 November 2014
                Categories
                Review

                curcumin,extraction,synthesis,degradation,metal chelation,nanoformulation

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