Efficient stabilization of natural curcuminoids mediated by oil body encapsulation

Simona Bettini, Daniele Vergara, Stefania Bonsegna, Livia Giotta, Claudia Toto, Marcello Chieppa, Michele Maffia, Giovanna Giovinazzo, Ludovico Valli, Angelo Santino

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Curcumin is a natural hydrophobic polyphenol found in the powdered rhizomes of Curcuma longa. Due to its capacity to interfere with many signalling pathways, it has been shown that curcumin has potential beneficial pharmacological effects including antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anticarcinogenic properties. However, the use of curcumin is fairly restricted because of its poor water solubility, low bioavailability, inadequate tissue absorption and degradation at alkaline pH. In the present contribution, we first verified the anti-proliferative effects of natural curcuminoids towards two different cell lines derived from an ovarian and a breast adenocarcinoma cancer. Later, curcuminoids were successfully encapsulated into reconstituted oil bodies. Once encapsulated into the triacylglycerol cores of the reconstituted oil bodies, curcumin, the most hydrophobic and active of the three curcuminoids, was better stabilized in comparison with albumin stabilization. Oil body encapsulated curcuminoids showed the same effects on cancer cell viability as the free drug, confirming the great potential of natural oil bodies as micro/nano-capsules in drug delivery applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5422-5429
Number of pages8
JournalRSC Advances
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - Apr 28 2013

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemical Engineering(all)
  • Chemistry(all)


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