Health Benefits of Turmeric

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There has been a breakthrough discovery in the treatment of cancer that forms in the plasma cells of bone marrow called myeloma. It was found by researchers from Virginia Commonwealth University, that when turmeric (aka curcumin) is combined with molecules from thalidomide, an anti-nausea drug, it is capable of targeting and killing multiple myeloma cells naturally.

You may be wondering, isn’t thalidomide the drug that was used to treat morning sickness back in the 50’s and in turn was responsible for causing widespread birth defects in children? Well yes, but in studying whether or not a more potent form of medicinal turmeric could be created, researchers found that certain molecules contained in thalidomide are useful in boosting the efficacy of turmeric without causing any harm to humans.

They found a way to hybridize the molecules from both substances to create one useful compound that is very potent against cancer. The good part about it is that any of the thalidomide components that remain in the compound are disintegrated in the body.

“Although thalidomide disturbs the microenvironment of tumor cells in bone marrow, it disintegrated in the body. Curcumin, also active against cancers, is limited by its poor water solubility. But the combination of thalidomide and curium in the hybrid molecules enhances both the cytotoxicity and solubility” said Zhang, assistant professor at the Department of Medicinal
Chemistry at the VCU School of Pharmacy.

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