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*J. Nisha and N. Anbu


Turmeric (Curcuma longa Linn), a nature‟s precious and most popular
Indian spice belonging to the family zingiberaceae is cultivated
throughout the Indian sub continent because of its excellent medicinal
properties. The rhizomes of the plant have medicinal values. The active
constituents of the turmeric are the flavonoids, curcumin (Diferulo
Methane) and various volatile oils, which includes zingiberone,
tumerone, water and fat soluble extracts of turmeric. The component
Curcumin exhibits strong anti-oxidant properties resulting in enhanced
cellular resistance to oxidative damage. Extensive research over last
fifty years has revealed several important functions of curcumin.
Turmeric has been shown with wide spectrum of biological action
which includes Anti-mutagenic, Anti-oxidant, Anti-inflammatory, Anti-diabetic, Anti
bacterial, Anti viral, Hepatoprotective, Anti-fungal, Anti-protozoal, Anti-ulcer and Analgesic
actions. Curcumin has the ability to inhibit carcinogenesis at three stages, namely tumour
promotion, angiogenesis and tumour growth. Curcumin is also used topically to counteract
inflammation and irritation associated with inflammatory skin conditions and allergies. This
review focuses on the medicinal and pharmacological treatment of diseases with the
medicinal values of turmeric.

Keywords: Turmeric, Curcuma longa, Manjal, Hepatoprotective action, Antiinflammatory action, Anti-diabetic, Anti tumour action.

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