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Metab Brain Dis. 2015 Apr;30(2):427-35. doi: 10.1007/s11011-014-9537-0. Epub 2014 May 1.

Epigenetic impact of curcumin on stroke prevention.

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Department of Physiology and Biophysics, School of Medicine, Health Sciences Centre, A-1201, University of Louisville, 500 South Preston Street, Louisville, KY, 40202, USA.


The epigenetic impact of curcumin in stroke and neurodegenerative disorders is curiosity-arousing. It is derived from Curcuma longa (spice), possesses anti-oxidative, anti-inflammatory, anti-lipidemic, neuro-protective and recently shown to exhibit epigenetic modulatory properties. Epigenetic studies include DNA methylation, histone modifications and RNA-based mechanisms which regulate gene expression without altering nucleotide sequences. Curcumin has been shown to affect cancer by altering epigenetic changes but its role as an epigenetic agent in cerebral stroke has not been much explored. Although curcumin possesses remarkable medicinal properties, the bioavailability of curcumin has limited its success in epigenetic studies and clinical trials. The present review is therefore designed to look into epigenetic mechanisms that could be induced with curcumin during stroke, along with its molecular designing with different moieties that may increase its bioavailability. Curcumin has been shown to be encapsulated in exosomes, nano-vesicles (<200 nm), thereby showing its therapeutic effects in brain diseases. Curcumin delivered through nanoparticles has been shown to be neuroregenerative but the use of nanoparticles in brain has limitations. Hence, curcumin-encapsulated exosomes along with curcumin-primed exosomes (exosomes released by curcumin-treated cells) are much needed to be explored to broadly look into their use as a novel therapy for stroke.

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