Anti-Tumor Effects Without Toxicities: Researchers Use a Spice To Treat Cancer

Antitumor Effects of Curcumin Prodrug

The high conversion rate of curcumin prodrug TBP1901 to curcumin in bone marrow warrants its clinical application for diseases growing in the marrow like multiple myeloma and leukemia. The natural polyphenol curcumin has shown promising efficacy with tumors in a number of preclinical models. Credit: KyotoU / Global Comms

Prodrug curcumin displays clinical potential. 

In cancer clinical studies, curcumin, a natural molecule related to turmeric, has been used to treat cancer patients. Despite its known antitumor effects, drug development has lagged due to challenges involving its chemistry. 

Now, a team of researchers at Kyoto University has developed a prodrug form of curcumin, TBP1901, that has shown anti-tumor effects without toxicities.

“Curcumin has long been used as a spice or food coloring, so we expect to see minimal side effects,” says lead author Masashi Kanai.

Curcumin, a natural polyphenol, has demonstrated promising efficacy against tumors in several preclinical models. Such studies have reported anecdotal evidence of curcumin’s effect in cancer patients.

However, curcumin’s limited bioavailability and low stability have hampered its clinical application to date.

Kanai’s team has found a possible detour around the problem by deductively identifying the enzyme GUSB for its key role in TBP1901 conversion to curcumin. The scientists hypothesized that this conversion would not be observed in mice with genetically impaired GUSB. They also confirmed, using a CRISPR-Cas9 screen method, that curcumin also has essential therapeutic targets.

“The high conversion rate of TBP1901 to curcumin in bone marrow warrants its clinical application for diseases growing in the marrow like multiple myeloma and leukemia,” notes Kanai.

Reference: “Pharmacologic characterization of TBP1901, a prodrug form of aglycone curcumin, and CRISPR-Cas9 screen for therapeutic targets of aglycone curcumin” by Tomoyuki Abe, Yoshihito Horisawa, Osamu Kikuchi, Hitomi Ozawa-Umeta, Atsuhiro Kishimoto, Yasuhiro Katsuura, Atsushi Imaizumi, Tadashi Hashimoto, Kotaro Shirakawa, Akifumi Takaori-Kondo, Kosuke Yusa, Tadashi Asakura, Hideaki Kakeya, and Masashi Kanai, 10 October 2022, European Journal of Pharmacology.
DOI: 10.1016/j.ejphar.2022.175321

The study was funded by the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science. 

38 Comments on "Anti-Tumor Effects Without Toxicities: Researchers Use a Spice To Treat Cancer"

  1. Thank you for your report about the turmeric’s curcumin could treat anti-tumors and cancer without toxicities. I would like to share with you the herbal treatments from China if I found.

  2. Circumin has so many benefits for your body besides fighting cancer like diabetes, depression, act as an inflammatory and antioxidant, great for oral health, your brain, skin, allergies and asthma

  3. Mr Cacey Taylor is there any way I can get in touch with you privately for you to educate me more about the circumin please I really want to know

  4. Curcumin from turmeric has been traditionally used in Indian households and Ayurveda for treatment of several ailments and had wound healing properties.

  5. Very interesting. Thank you

  6. No the reason this has not been researched isn’t because of bioavailability or stability. It is because big pharma has no interest in solving problems or healing people unless they can patent it and make a lot of money from it. As the human race we have put people on the moon..and we can’t figure out how to make something more bioavailible?? Really..

  7. The reason this has not been researched and perfected isn’t because of bioavailability or stability. It is because big pharma has no interest in helping people unless they can patent it and make money. We have put people on the moon and talk on personalized devices on world wide web. Come on now we can do better in the War on Cancer if those with the means really wanted to help others.

    • @

      RE: “Come on now we can do better in the War on Cancer if those with the means really wanted to help others.”

      Of course we could. But that’s not what the bogus ‘war on cancer’ or any other official ‘war on this or that’ is about.

      Most people would be much smarter and better informed if they had awareness of what the “war on cancer” movement (and the “Breast Cancer Awareness” movement) does NOT raise awareness about.

      The official mainstream “war on cancer” has been an unofficial “war” on the unsuspecting public: to keep them misinformed and misguided about the real truth of this “war.” The latest program/”promise” is an extension or reincarnation of the enduring deep racket.

      This PHONY official “war” was never meant to be won but to be CONTINUED (preferably endlessly, at least for decades) so that the criminal BIG allopathic medical business (the medical mafia) built around them make insane profits and defraud the general naive/stupid public, which they’ve been doing successfully … so “THEY ARE winning THEIR war against the general forever-naive/forever-stupid public”..

      The orthodox cancer establishment has been saying a cure for cancer “is just around the corner” and “we’re winning the war on cancer” for decades. It’s all hype and lies (read Dr. Guy Faguet’s ‘War on cancer,” Dr. Sam Epstein’s work, or Clifton Leaf’s book, or Dr. Siefried’s work on this bogus ‘war’, etc). The criminal medical establishment deliberate and falsely self-servingly claims and distorts a ‘win’ in the bogus ‘war on cancer’ when the only truly notably win is a reduction in lung cancer due to a huge reduction in smoking, which has NOTHING to do with their cancer treatments. Lying is their mode of operation.

      Since the war on cancer began orthodox medicine hasn’t progressed in their basic highly profitable therapies: it still uses primarily and almost exclusively highly toxic, deadly things like radiation, chemo, surgery, and drugs that have killed millions of people instead of the disease.

      As long as the official “war on cancer” is a HUGE BUSINESS based on expensive TREATMENTS (INTERVENTIONS) of a disease instead of its PREVENTION, logically, they will never find a cure for cancer. The moonshot-war on cancer inventions, too, includes industry-profitable gene therapies of cancer treatment that are right in line with the erroneous working model of mechanistic reductionism of allopathic medicine.

      The lucrative game of the medical business is to endlessly “look for” a cure but not “find” a cure. Practically all resources in the phony ‘war on cancer’ are poured into TREATMENT of cancer but almost none in the PREVENTION of the disease. It’s IRREFUTABLE PROOF POSITIVE that BIG MONEY and a TOTAL LACK OF ETHICS rule the official medical establishment.

      It’s just like with any bogus official “war” (‘war on drugs’, ‘war on terrorism’, ‘war on covid’ etc) — it’s not about winning these wars but to primarily prolong them because behind any of these fraudulent “war” rackets of the criminal establishment is a Big Business, such as the massive cancer industry. The very profitable TREATMENT focus of conventional medicine, instead of a PREVENTION focus which these official medical quacks (or rather crooks) can hardly make any money off, is a major reason why today 1 of 2 men and 1 in 3 women can expect a cancer diagnosis at some point in their lifetimes yet that rate was multiple times lower 5 decades ago when the phony ‘war on cancer’ began (1 in about 16). And 5 decades ago when this bogus war began cancer was the second leading cause of death and 50 years later it is STILL the second leading cause of death in the country this “war” was declared in. These facts alone prove we are NOT winning the war on cancer.

      At the same time, this same orthodox cancer cartel has been suppressing and squashing a number of very effective and beneficial alternative cancer approaches. You probably guessed why: effective, safe, inexpensive cancer therapies are cutting into the astronomical profits of the medical mafia’s lucrative treatments. That longstanding decadent activity is part of the fraud of the war on cancer.

      If the public were to scrutinize what the medical industry and its government pawns are telling them about the ‘war on cancer’ instead of blindly believing what they’re saying, they’d find that the cancer industry and the cancer charities have been dismissing, ignoring, and obfuscating the true causes of cancer while mostly putting the blame for cancer on the individual, denying or dismissing the serious harms from orthodox cancer treatments and chemical toxicants, and resorting to deceptive cancer statistics to “educate” (think: mislead) the public that their way of treatment is actually successful — read this well referenced scholarly article’s (“A Mammogram Letter The British Medical Journal Censored”) afterword on the war on cancer at (scroll down to the afterword that addresses the fraudulent ‘war on cancer’).

      What the medical establishment “informs” the public about is about as truthful as what the political establishment keeps telling them. Not to forget, the corporate media (the mainstream fake news media) is a willing tool to spread these distortions, lies, and the scam of the war on cancer.

      Does anyone really think it’s a coincidence that double Nobel laureate Linus Pauling called the ‘war on cancer’ a fraud? If you look closer you’ll come to the same conclusion. But…politics and self-serving interests of the conventional medical cartel, and their allied corporate media, keep the real truth far away from the public at large. Or people’s own denial or indifference of the real truth.

      • Your tinfoil hat is obscuring your view. For the record, I’m throwing in w/ “big pharma” rather than a bunch of holistic weenies.

        • Lol.. you throw, WITHOUT EVIDENCE, a slander term (“tinfoil hat” aka as “conspiracy theorist”) at Jeacj Olhu as your “substantial” form of “debunking” his/her comment. I’ve never been so persuaded by your infantile bogus evidence! Yikes…

          You must be either a willful ignoramus or, much much more likely, a lowly conscienceless troll doing clumsy “damage control” for the ruling criminal mega psychopaths owning the medical allopathy/big pharma mob enterprise and governments.

          “I just cannot understand why all these damn anti-vaxxers and conspiracy theorists don’t trust a government that actively works against the public interest 100 percent of the time. I mean if you can’t trust institutions that are deliberately constructed to subvert the common good for the benefit of the wealthy and powerful at every turn, who can you trust?” — Caitlin Johnstone, Independent Journalist

          “Never wrestle with a pig, because it isn’t interested in the outcome. It derives all its pleasure from luring you into the pigsty where it can coat you with muck and excrement.” — Larry Romanoff, Writer

  8. … do humans really wanna find the cure for cancer, that is a question one could ask it self!!!

  9. I’ve been preforming daily ball rubs with Curcumin since pubescence. Over the last 69 years of using Curcumin, I have noticed an increase in the length and thickness of my ropes!

  10. Why this question?

  11. Studies have shown piperine a compound found in black pepper can increase our bodies ability to make more use of cummin. When in the presence of each other in the gut when taken together it can allow for the cummin to be upwards of 2000x’s more bioavailable for our bodies to make use of then otherwise. While I am far from any authority on this any increase of such a strong antioxidant’s ability to help us prevent or recover from the maladies inflammation and the many other things that can arise of a result of the prolonged states of it that is a win in my book!

  12. Curious about cancer | December 11, 2022 at 3:01 pm | Reply

    My question is this. If this works on tumors does it kill the cancer as well or is this non-cancers tumors. I’m thinking Glioblastoma that is supposed to be so rare and so many people are dying from it I’ve known like six people last year that died from it and I know several people already this year that have it. That’s my question.

  13. Curious about cancer | December 11, 2022 at 3:05 pm | Reply

    What I meant was brain cancer I know the article talks about cancer I am just curious about glioblastoma cancer as it is such a rapid growing cancer and seems to be no type of cure for whatsoever. So I am aware of the article said cancer I would just wondering about brain cancer.

  14. My family has been drinking this from ages specifically for pains and stomach issues, if you had a big day give your self a favour add turmeric half tea spoon in warm milk and drink with some few days you will feel amazing.

  15. How much should one take to cure cancer?

  16. Have you heard of maple syrup and baking soda… my husband had a grade 4 malignant brain tumor and after an operation,radiation and chemo he started on this. His tumor did not show up for 2 years. It has just begun to grow a bit and is back on the msple syruo 3 tsps and 1tso baking soda heated together. Need to googke it for info. I will now try curcumin for him. Hope this helps someone

  17. Listen to you all. Are any of you terminal with cancer? Or qualified oncologist? I have been kept alive for 4 years and have witnessed others too that are fighting for thier life with chemo surgery radiotherapy and medication. Some of us try alternative remedies alongside but cancers are so different some very slow growing some are super fast. My team are exellent and all you conpiricers presume us patients and our teams do not have a brain!

  18. Mardelia Virissimo | December 12, 2022 at 5:58 am | Reply

    Can tumeric shrink cancer tumors in the breast and lymph nodes?

  19. Oleocanthal shows great promise for different cancers and more. It’s one of the most powerful anti inflammatories. Look it up. Pretty incredible.

  20. Thats not going to bring my pap back TO LIFE … IS IT ??? Speed the research up YOU WORTHLESS WASTE OF LIFE

  21. Although unrelated to this research it has been found that curcumin in large dosages can damage the liver, something supplement users should be aware of.

  22. I have A very good friend who has been fighting brain tumors .
    The doctors are trying every treatment they know of .
    Could this young man be treated with this new drug ?

  23. Since I’ve been taking 1500mg of curcumin Daily For the last decade, I have completely stopped All over the counter Anti inflammatories.

  24. My late mother Rose sat in on a high level government meeting over 30 years ago with regard to finding a cure for cancer. Many of guests were from the medical community. At the conclusion of the meeting, it was stated that a miracle cure would essentially cause great distress economically forcing many to shut down their clinics, offices, pharmaceutical companies, etc. due to drastic loss of income. It was also implied there is already a cure out there for cancer that is not being used. If this true, all I can say is there is a special place in Hell waiting for these doctors, scientists, and government officials as a result of them taking financial and moral advantage of the suffering out there toward the patients and their families. I have lost 5 close family members due to cancer. I have a cousin who had brain cancer over 30 years ago, and he is still living because he chose an alternative natural treatment and lifestyle.

  25. My 85 yo mother has had small growths in her pancreas for several years that her doc has been watching. The last scan showed that they didn’t grow, but had shrunken this time. Her only change has been adding curcumin daily.

  26. Many doctors have sacrificed their lives to find medical breakthroughs for the benefit of mankind. All their hard work is buried in the library of medicine, self proclaimed largest medical library in the world. Where nothing is indexed
    If you don’t know the doctors name good luck trying to research any written papers.
    Does anyone practice nutrition or prevention. The question I have for big pharma is after so many hundreds of billions of dollars profit how much money is enough?

  27. I have been in the medical profession for over 20years and I have zero faith in most medical professionals. I avoid doctor visits and encourage all who will listen to do the same. Big pharma has NEVER had our best interest in mind and instead are only concerned with how much money they can make until one of their loved ones becomes ill and then they want someone to do something to”save” them. My views on humanity as a whole has never been this disheartening and I just can’t foresee much improvement.

  28. Turmeric has reduced 50% of my psoriasis. It’s amazing, I highly recommend it.

  29. I personally drink my turmeric concoction atleast every other day. I mix with cinnamon, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Sometimes I add been powder in it and my body thanks me so much. Hey I don’t need any research to tell me how I feel when I take this concoction. Thank God for providing us with natural herbs for our well-being. Am a registered nurse and work in the ER. This flu season am working with all kind of respiratory patients and I take my turmeric every day and have not been sick meanwhile my coworkers be calling off sick of the flu or Rsv or Covid. So I can testify of the protective properties of turmeric. Thanks for reading and God bless you all.

  30. Has anyone thought about our food chain as a cause and effect,in part, why Big Pharma is making $$$ billions?
    We are flashing ingesting more processed foods than 30 yrs ago, hence increase in obesity, sugar intake, inflammation, insulin resistance, diabetes etc.
    Question? Why hasen’t the FDA cracked down on the food manufacturers? Are they in ” bed” with Big Pharma (and Congress)?
    I remain.

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