Curcumin-encapsulated nanoparticles as innovative antimicrobial and wound healing agent

Nanomedicine. 2015 Jan;11(1):195-206. doi: 10.1016/j.nano.2014.09.004. Epub 2014 Sep 18.


Burn wounds are often complicated by bacterial infection, contributing to morbidity and mortality. Agents commonly used to treat burn wound infection are limited by toxicity, incomplete microbial coverage, inadequate penetration, and rising resistance. Curcumin is a naturally derived substance with innate antimicrobial and wound healing properties. Acting by multiple mechanisms, curcumin is less likely than current antibiotics to select for resistant bacteria. Curcumin's poor aqueous solubility and rapid degradation profile hinder usage; nanoparticle encapsulation overcomes this pitfall and enables extended topical delivery of curcumin. In this study, we synthesized and characterized curcumin nanoparticles (curc-np), which inhibited in vitro growth of methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA) and Pseudomonas aeruginosa in dose-dependent fashion, and inhibited MRSA growth and enhanced wound healing in an in vivo murine wound model. Curc-np may represent a novel topical antimicrobial and wound healing adjuvant for infected burn wounds and other cutaneous injuries.

Keywords: Antimicrobial; Burn wound; Curcumin; Infection; Nanoparticle; Wound healing.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / administration & dosage*
  • Bacterial Infections / drug therapy*
  • Burns / therapy
  • Cell Movement
  • Curcumin / chemistry*
  • Dose-Response Relationship, Drug
  • Drug Delivery Systems
  • Keratinocytes / cytology
  • Light
  • Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus
  • Mice
  • Mice, Inbred BALB C
  • Microscopy, Electron, Scanning
  • Nanomedicine / methods
  • Nanoparticles / chemistry*
  • Scattering, Radiation
  • Solubility
  • Stem Cells
  • Wound Healing
  • Zebrafish


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Curcumin