Posted on Oct 01, 2014, 6 a.m.
Curcumin blocks the protein that is overexpressed in colon cancer.
The active ingredient in turmeric – the spice that lends curry its characteristic color, curcumin has been shown in a number of previous studies to exert certain chemopreventative effects. Fayez K. Ghishan, from the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center (Arizona, USA), and colleagues have discovered that the active part of the cortactin protein, known as Phopsho Tyrosine 421 (pTyr421), is hyper-activated in malignant tumors of the colon. In treating human colon cancer tumor cells with curcumin, the team observed that by activating PTPN1, an enzyme, curcumin turned off the active form of cortactin, causing cancer cells to lose the ability to move and metastasize to other parts of the body. The study authors submit that: “these data suggest that curcumin is an activator of PTPN1 and can reduce cell motility in colon cancer via dephosphorylation of pTyr(421)-CTTN which could be exploited for novel therapeutic approaches in colon cancer therapy.”
Radhakrishnan VM, Kojs P, Young G, Ramalingam R, Jagadish B, Mash EA, Martinez JD, Ghishan FK, Kiela PR. “pTyr421 cortactin is overexpressed in colon cancer and is dephosphorylated by curcumin: involvement of non-receptor type 1 protein tyrosine phosphatase (PTPN1).” PLoS One. 2014 Jan 22;9(1):e85796.