Chemical from turmeric helps treat cancer in children

Scientists in the U.S. have found yet another use for curcumin, the bioactive component of turmeric that is widely used in Indian cuisine, this time to treat cancer in children. Researchers at Nemours Children’s Hospital and the University of Central Florida (UCF) have found that nanoparticles loaded with curcumin can target and destroy neuroblastoma tumour cells. Children aged five or less are most commonly affected.
In their study, the researchers attached curcumin to cerium oxide nanoparticles and tested the nano-curcumin formulation in cell lines of a high-risk form of neuroblastoma.
This formulation induced substantial cell death in neuroblastoma cells while producing no or only minor toxicity in healthy cells,” says the report published in Nanoscale . Curcumin has been shown to have substantial anti-cancer ability, but its low solubility and poor stability have restricted its use in therapeutic applications. The study demonstrates a treatment method “without the toxicity of agressive therapy” and shows that nanoparticles can be “an effective delivery vehicle” for cancer drugs, said a statement from UCF.

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