ORLANDO, NETRALNEWS.COM - Medical scientists in the United States (US) have rediscovered the use of curcumin, a biological component of turmeric, to help cure cancer in children.
Researchers at Nemours Children's Hospital and University of Central Florida (UCF) have found that curcumin-laden nano particles can offer new treatments to target and destroy neuroblastoma tumor cells. Neuroblastoma is the most common cancer in children under the age of five.
High-risk neuroblastoma can be resistant to traditional therapy, and the chances for survival can be bad. Cancer begins in early nerve cells and usually forms in the adrenal gland tissue, near the kidneys. They are also associated with developmental delays, hearing loss, or other defects even after traditional treatments end.
In their study, the researchers attached curcumin to cerium oxide nanoparticles and tested nano-curcumin formulations on cell lines from high-risk forms of neuroblastoma.
"This formulation causes substantial cell death in neuroblastoma cells while not producing mild toxicity, or only in healthy cells," the report said in the journal Nanoscale, as reported by the Hindustan Times.
Curcumin has been shown to have substantial anti-cancer properties, but its low solubility and poor stability have limited its use in therapeutic applications.
According to a statement from UCF, the research conducted by the scientists suggests a new method for treating this tumor "without aggressive therapy toxicity" and suggests that nanoparticles can be an "effective delivery vehicle" for cancer drugs.
"We hope that in the future, nanoparticles can be utilized to personalize treatment to patients and reduce the late effects of therapy," the researchers said.