Critical reviews in therapeutic drug carrier systems

Nanocurcumin: a promising therapeutic advancement over native curcumin.

PMID 23662605


Curcumin, a naturally occurring polyphenolic compound, is known to have a wide range of therapeutic and pharmacological properties. Although it is a considerably promising compound, its poor water solubility and fast degradation profile make it compromise over its bioavailability way below the threshold level on administration. Over a period of time, a lot of emphasis has been given to improve the biodistribution of native curcumin, but it is only recently that the application of the field of nanotherapeutics has significantly improved its therapeutic efficacy. This is through the development of nanorange formulations of curcumin, popularly known as the "nanocurcumin." These attempts have given a strong platform to reap all the biological benefits from this phytodrug, which was not significantly plausible earlier. This review gives an insight into the reasons that make nanocurcumin a more therapeutically advanced drug than its native counterpart. It also discusses various nanometric formulations of curcumin that have been reported for its controlled and targeted delivery along with a critical comparison of its therapeutic efficacy with free curcumin. We also summarize the biological applications, patented technologies, and current status of the ongoing clinical trials related to nanocurcumin.