Curcumin – the natural pigment that gives the spice turmeric its yellow color – has been gaining attention for its potential brain health benefits.
“With baby boomers coming of age, there has been lot of emphasis on the aging process especially related to cognitive performance,” explained Anurag Pande, PhD, VP Scientific Affairs, Sabinsa.
Curcuminoids, the naturally occurring compounds in the rhizomes of turmeric or Curcuma longa, have been intensely studied for their biological activities including antioxidant, liver protective, healing, anti-inflammatory activity and more, said Dr Pande. While inflammation has been established as a root cause of most of chronic diseases its role in neuro conditions like Alzheimer’s has only been recently understood.
“Today one area of key interest to researchers has been curcuminoid application as neuroprotective support. In very early studies using Curcumin C3 Complex, researchers were able to demonstrate in in-vivo models that low dosage of Curcumin effectively disaggregates the amyloid as well as prevents fibrils and oligomer formation,” he added. (Yang F et al., 2005, J.Biol.Chem. Vol. 280, pp. 5892-5901)
Clinical data from Alzheimer disease patients have also indicated that Curcumin C3 Complex supplementation was well tolerated in geriatric subjects which was very encouraging for future longer trials on Alzheimer’s subjects. (Ringman et al. Alzheimer’s Res. 2012, Vol 4. No. 5).
There is also data to support a potential role for curcuminoids to improve neurocognitive conditions and improve negative and depressive symptoms in schizophrenia subjects, said Dr Pande.