Research Abstract


Discovery of a new function of curcumin which enhances its anticancer therapeutic potency

2016年8月1日 Scientific Reports 6 : 30962 doi: 10.1038/srep30962



Koji Nagahama, Tomoya Utsumi, Takayuki Kumano, Saeko Maekawa, Naho Oyama and Junji Kawakami

Corresponding Author

長濱 宏治

Curcumin has received immense attention over the past decades because of its diverse biological activities and recognized as a promising drug candidate in a large number of diseases. However, its clinical application has been hindered due to extremely low aqueous solubility, chemical stability, and cellular uptake. In this study, we discovered quite a new function of curcumin, i.e. pH-responsive endosomal disrupting activity, derived from curcumin’s self-assembly. We selected anticancer activity as an example of biological activities of curcumin, and investigated the contribution of pH-responsive property to its anticancer activity. As a result, we demonstrated that the pH-responsive property significantly enhances the anticancer activity of curcumin. Furthermore, we demonstrated a utility of the pH-responsive property of curcumin as delivery nanocarriers for doxorubicin toward combination cancer therapy. These results clearly indicate that the smart curcumin assemblies act as promising nanoplatform for development of curcumin-based therapeutics.