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Technology boosts delivery of antioxidants in curcumin

Kathleen Blanchard's picture

Curcumin, found in the curry spice turmeric, has recently been studied for a variety of disease fighting properties. Now scientists from Japan have developed a technology that can boost the body's uptake of antioxidants found in curcumin from turmeric.

Several clinical trials are in progress, exploring the disease fighting properties of turmeric, including cancer, its potential role for treating Alzheimer’s disease, and the use of curcumin for psoriasis treatment.

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The researchers have developed a nano-size capsule from liposomes, known to boost absorption of other drugs. In lab studies, the technology boosted delivery of antioxidants in curcumin that can help fight disease. The technology would ensure that antioxidants in curcumin reach the bloodstream and blood cells.

The scientists fed the liposome encapsulated curcumin to rats, finding that doing so boosted antioxidant levels in the bloodstream, and quadrupled absorption of curcumin.

The findings are published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry. The scientists hope that encapsulating curcumin, found in the curry spice turmeric, can increase absorption in the gastrointestinal tract, in turn delivering powerful antioxidants found in curcumin to the bloodstream to help fight disease.