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Turmeric as an Immunomodulating Strategy

Posted by Manuela Boyle on 23 April 2021
Turmeric as an Immunomodulating Strategy

Curcuma longa (turmeric) has demonstrated antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immune-stimulating actions. The herb's primary active constituent, curcumin, has a beneficial action on numbers signalling pathways involved in the induction of inflammation, cell cycle apoptosis, proliferation, survival, invasion, angiogenesis, and metastasis.
NF-kB is a transcription factor that has shown responsiveness to curcumin. Suppression of NF-kB subsequently down-regulates COZ-2 and therefore mediates pro-inflammatory prostaglandins downstream. Inflammatory cytokines, including IL-6, IL-8, and TNF-alpha, are also reduced.
In cancer, curcumin induces apoptosis (programmed cancer cells death) by downregulating Bcl-2 and upregulating Bax through JNK pathway activation. Furthermore, tyrosine kinases (for example EGFR and VEGF) are key regulators of intracellular signalling and when over-expressed or mutated, contribute to the development and progression of tumours. Evidence-based research demonstrates that curcumin inhibits VEGF receptors.
Very little ingested curcumin is found in the plasma: even eight grams of pure curcumin results in <1 nanogram/mL of curcumin in the blood. Trials at MD Anderson Cancer Centre in United States are demonstrating the blood concentration of 500 nanograms/mL maybe required for the therapeutic effects of curcumin against cancer.
Cancer has a high affinity for biological membranes and rapidly penetrates the gut or liver prior to systemic bioavailability. This is one of the reasons why we recommend a critical extract of turmeric in a liquid form that allows to reach the therapeutic levels (the amount needed) and rapid absorption.

Author: Manuela Boyle
Tags: News Evidence Based Research Most Popular Cancer Herbal Medicine


  • The Institute for Functional Medicine
  • Society for Integrative Oncology
  • American Society of Clinical Oncology
  • Australasian Integrative Medicine Association
  • Naturopaths and Herbalists Association of Australia
  • British Naturopathic Association

Disclaimer: Manuela Boyle is not a registered medical practitioner or specialist medical oncologist. Manuela Boyle is a general health service provider who is not legally required to be registered under National Health Practitioner regulation law. She practises under the national Code of Conduct that sets standards to general health service providers who are not regulated by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency.

Manuela Boyle is an accredited member of the following professional organisations:
NHAA (Naturopaths & Herbalists Association of Australia), SIO (Society of Integrative Oncology) USA, AIMA (Australasian Integrative Medical Association), IFM (Institute of Functional Medicine) USA