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Home News and Update Year 2010 Good ol’ Turmeric Could be The Next Cancer Buster

Good ol’ Turmeric Could be The Next Cancer Buster

Times of India
16 October 2010
By Jayashree Nandi
Bangalore, India

Bangalore Doctors Are Part Of World’s First Clinical Trial
Will cancer fighters find an answer in Indian turmeric? Oncologists and cancer care centres are finding curative properties, especially for cancers affecting the head and neck, in regular use of turmeric.

Good ol’ Turmeric Could be The Next Cancer Buster
Doctors at the Mazumdar Shaw Cancer Centre (MSCC) are part of the world’s first clinical trial study to assess the impact of curcumin in treating initial stages of oral cancer. The three–year study across three centres concluded recently and data analysis is being carried out. Doctors noticed improvements in many cases.

Study On 220 Patients
This department of biotechnology–funded study involves 220 patients who are in the initial stages of oral cancer (oculoplegia). All patients started on a sixmonth treatment of 1.2gm of curcumin oral pill in multiple doses. The patients who showed good results were asked to continue with the dose.

"Earlier, we used to suggest it should be topically applied as a paste. There was a good response. But it leaves stains on the teeth due to which compliance became a problem. That’s when we started with the pills. We’ve seen good results in some patients but the outcome of clinical trials will be out in December," said Dr Moni Abraham Kuriakose, professor & director of the department of surgical oncology and chief of head and neck oncology services, MSCC.

Kill Chemo–Resistant Cells
He added while there have been a lot of cell line studies on the effectiveness of curcumin, this will be the first clinical trial. Researchers at the University of Leicester have been using curcumin and done a study to prove it is effective in destroying chemo–resistant cells.

A Trend In Us, Japan
According to chairman and managing and medical director, Soukya, which practises integrated medicine, Dr Isaac Mathai, there is a trend in the US of people taking turmeric pills. In Japan, people have recently started taking turmeric with milk. "Though we haven’t done any scientific studies, it has been proved scientifically several times that it has antiinflammatory properties.

Curcumin longa is very effective. Now turmeric capsules are available and it’s considered very effective for cancer," he said. Breast cancer surgeon, MSCC, Dr Anthony V Pais, usually prescribes half a teaspoon of turmeric with milk or hot water to his patients. "It’s proven to have cancer preventive properties but I think it’s most effective in the pre–malignant condition," he said.
  • Department of biotechnology–funded study involves 220 patients who are in the initial stages of oral cancer
  • Researchers at the University of Leicester have been using curcumin and done a study to prove it is effective
  • In Japan, people have recently started taking turmeric with milk.
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