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J Wound Care. 2004 Mar;13(3):107-9.

Effect of curcumin on radiation-impaired healing of excisional wounds in mice.

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Department of Radiobiology, Kasturba Medical College, Manipal, India.



To study the effect on wound contraction of pretreatment with various doses of curcumin (the most important active ingredient of the spice turmeric) in mice exposed to 6 Gy whole-body gamma radiation.


A full-thickness skin wound was produced on the dorsum of Swiss albino mice treated with and without 25, 50, 100, 150 or 200 mg/kg body weight of curcumin before exposure to 6 Gy gamma radiation. Progression of wound contraction was monitored using video images of the wound at various days post-irradiation until full healing occurred. Mean wound healing times were also calculated.


Irradiation caused significant delay in wound contraction and healing times. However, treatment with curcumin resulted in a dose-dependent increase in contraction when compared with a control. Greatest contraction was observed for 100 mg/kg curcumin, with statistically significant results at days three (p < 0.009), six (p < 0.05) and nine (p < 0.05) post-irradiation for this dose. Complete healing was achieved by day 23 post-irradiation in the curcumin-treated irradiation group.


Pretreatment with curcumin has a conductive effect on irradiated wounds. It could be a substantial therapeutic agent for ameliorating radiation-induced delay in wound repair in cases of combined injuries.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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