Curcumin, chemically known as diferuloylmethane, is a spice derived from the rhizomes of the plant Curcuma longa. Curcumin has anti-cancer properties with no discernible toxicity. Using cultured medulloblastoma cells and a transgenic medulloblastoma mouse model, researchers have shown that curcumin can reduce tumor growth in vitro and in vivo.
Dr. Langhans has now identified a novel molecular target of curcumin, the anaphase-promoting complex (APC) component Cdc27/APC3, that could be used as a biomarker to predict which patients respond to curcumin-based therapy. In addition, a full patent application is being submitted claiming Cdc27 not only as a biomarker, but also as a target for drug development of novel anti-cancer drugs.