Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Immunol. 2003 Oct 1;171(7):3863-71.

Curcumin (diferuloylmethane) inhibits constitutive and IL-6-inducible STAT3 phosphorylation in human multiple myeloma cells.

Author information

Cytokine Research Section, Department of Bioimmunotherapy, Unit 143, University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Numerous reports suggest that IL-6 promotes survival and proliferation of multiple myeloma (MM) cells through the phosphorylation of a cell signaling protein, STAT3. Thus, agents that suppress STAT3 phosphorylation have potential for the treatment of MM. In the present report, we demonstrate that curcumin (diferuloylmethane), a pharmacologically safe agent in humans, inhibited IL-6-induced STAT3 phosphorylation and consequent STAT3 nuclear translocation. Curcumin had no effect on STAT5 phosphorylation, but inhibited the IFN-alpha-induced STAT1 phosphorylation. The constitutive phosphorylation of STAT3 found in certain MM cells was also abrogated by treatment with curcumin. Curcumin-induced inhibition of STAT3 phosphorylation was reversible. Compared with AG490, a well-characterized Janus kinase 2 inhibitor, curcumin was a more rapid (30 min vs 8 h) and more potent (10 micro M vs 100 micro M) inhibitor of STAT3 phosphorylation. In a similar manner, the dose of curcumin completely suppressed proliferation of MM cells; the same dose of AG490 had no effect. In contrast, a cell-permeable STAT3 inhibitor peptide that can inhibit the STAT3 phosphorylation mediated by Src blocked the constitutive phosphorylation of STAT3 and also suppressed the growth of myeloma cells. TNF-alpha and lymphotoxin also induced the proliferation of MM cells, but through a mechanism independent of STAT3 phosphorylation. In addition, dexamethasone-resistant MM cells were found to be sensitive to curcumin. Overall, our results demonstrated that curcumin was a potent inhibitor of STAT3 phosphorylation, and this plays a role in the suppression of MM proliferation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free full text
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons


    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for HighWire
    Loading ...
    Support Center