High bioavailability curcumin: an anti-inflammatory and neurosupportive bioactive nutrient for neurodegenerative diseases characterized by chronic neuroinflammation

Arch Toxicol. 2017 Apr;91(4):1623-1634. doi: 10.1007/s00204-017-1939-4. Epub 2017 Feb 15.


Neuroinflammation is a pathophysiological process present in a number of neurodegenerative disorders, such as Alzheimer's disease, Huntington's disease, Parkinson's disease, stroke, traumatic brain injury including chronic traumatic encephalopathy and other age-related CNS disorders. Although there is still much debate about the initial trigger for some of these neurodegenerative disorders, during the progression of disease, broad range anti-inflammatory drugs including cytokine suppressive anti-inflammatory drugs (CSAIDs) might be promising therapeutic options to limit neuroinflammation and improve the clinical outcome. One of the most promising CSAIDs is curcumin, which modulates the activity of several transcription factors (e.g., STAT, NF-κB, AP-1) and their pro-inflammatory molecular signaling pathways. However, normal curcumin preparations demonstrate low bioavailability in vivo. To increase bioavailability, preparations of high bioavailability curcumin have been introduced to achieve therapeutically relevant concentrations in target tissues. This literature review aims to summarize the pharmacokinetic and toxicity profile of different curcumin formulations.

Keywords: Curcumin; Microglia; Neuroinflammation; Pharmacokinetics.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / administration & dosage*
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / adverse effects
  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal / pharmacokinetics
  • Biological Availability
  • Curcumin / administration & dosage*
  • Curcumin / adverse effects
  • Curcumin / pharmacokinetics
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Inflammation / drug therapy
  • Inflammation / physiopathology
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / drug therapy*
  • Neurodegenerative Diseases / physiopathology
  • Signal Transduction / drug effects


  • Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal
  • Curcumin