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Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 9324085, 14 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/9324085
Review Article

Therapeutic Potential of Curcumin for the Treatment of Brain Tumors

1Department of Neurosurgery, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, USA
2Department of Oncology, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, USA
3Karmanos Cancer Institute, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, USA

Received 23 July 2016; Accepted 7 September 2016

Academic Editor: Mohamed Essa

Copyright © 2016 Neil V. Klinger and Sandeep Mittal. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Brain malignancies currently carry a poor prognosis despite the current multimodal standard of care that includes surgical resection and adjuvant chemotherapy and radiation. As new therapies are desperately needed, naturally occurring chemical compounds have been studied for their potential chemotherapeutic benefits and low toxicity profile. Curcumin, found in the rhizome of turmeric, has extensive therapeutic promise via its antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and antiproliferative properties. Preclinical in vitro and in vivo data have shown it to be an effective treatment for brain tumors including glioblastoma multiforme. These effects are potentiated by curcumin’s ability to induce G2/M cell cycle arrest, activation of apoptotic pathways, induction of autophagy, disruption of molecular signaling, inhibition of invasion, and metastasis and by increasing the efficacy of existing chemotherapeutics. Further, clinical data suggest that it has low toxicity in humans even at large doses. Curcumin is a promising nutraceutical compound that should be evaluated in clinical trials for the treatment of human brain tumors.