Therapeutic Effects of Curcumol in Several Diseases; An Overview
Curcumae Rhizoma, also known as Ezhu is a traditional Chinese medicine that has been used for many centuries against several diseases. The rhizome of the plant is composed of curcuminoids (curcumin, demethoxycurcumin, and bisdemethoxycurcumin), and essential volatile oils including curcumol, curdione, and germacrone. While curcuminoids have been extensively studied for their antimicrobial, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anticancer properties, the therapeutic efficacy of curcumol is still emerging. Recent studies have shown anticancer properties of curcumol against multiple solid tumors such as breast, colorectal, head and neck, and lung adenocarcinomas. The underlying anti-tumor mechanisms revealed inhibition of several signaling pathways (NF-κB, MAPK, PI-3K/AKT, and GSK-3β) associated with cell proliferation, survival, anti-apoptosis, invasion and metastasis. Besides curcumol, extracts from the Curcumae Rhizoma roots possess many other terpenoids such as β-elemene, δ-elemene, germacrone, furanodiene and furanodienone with known anticancer properties. In this review, we comprehensively focused on the composition of Curcumae Rhizoma essential oils, their structure, isolation and therapeutic uses of curcumol to aid in the improvement and development of novel drugs with minimal cytotoxicity, enhanced efficacy, and less cost.
Nutr Cancer . 2020 Apr 14;1-15. doi: 10.1080/01635581.2020.1749676. Online ahead of print.