Polar extract of Curcuma longa protects cartilage homeostasis: possible mechanism of action

Inflammopharmacology. 2018 Oct;26(5):1233-1243. doi: 10.1007/s10787-017-0433-1. Epub 2018 Jan 8.


Background: Curcuma longa has been well documented for managing joint inflammation and pain. The present study investigated the effect of polar extract of C. longa (NR-INF-02) on cartilage homeostasis in human articular chondrocytes knee (NHAC-kn) cells to understand its plausible mechanism of action.

Methods: Dysregulation of cartilage homeostasis was induced by IL-1β and H2O2. Modulating effects of NR-INF-02 on degradation markers viz., chondrocyte apoptosis, senescence, cytokine, eicosanoids, and cartilage synthesis markers viz., glycosaminoglycans and type II collagen degradation was evaluated in human articular chondrocytes knee (NHAC-kn) cells. Further, the effect of NR-INF-02 on lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced expression of NF-kB in RAW264.7 macrophages was investigated.

Results: NR-INF-02 significantly attenuated IL-1β-induced chondrocyte cytotoxicity, apoptosis and release of chondrocyte degradation markers such as IL-6, IL-8, COX-2, PGE2, TNF-α, ICAM-1 in NHAC-kn cells. Also, NR-INF-02 protected IL-1β-induced damage to synthesis markers such as glycosaminoglycans, type II collagen and further attenuated H2O2-induced chondrocyte senescence. In addition NR-INF-02 suppressed LPS-induced NF-kB expression in RAW264.7 cells.

Conclusions: NR-INF-02 protects cartilage homeostasis by maintaining the balance between synthesis and degradation of cartilage matrix.

Keywords: Cartilage homeostasis; Curcuma longa; NR-INF-02; Osteoarthritis; Pain; Senescence; Turmacin.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Apoptosis / drug effects
  • Cartilage / drug effects*
  • Cartilage / metabolism
  • Cells, Cultured
  • Chondrocytes / drug effects
  • Chondrocytes / physiology
  • Collagen Type II / biosynthesis
  • Curcuma
  • Homeostasis / drug effects*
  • Humans
  • Interleukin-1beta / pharmacology
  • Mice
  • Osteoarthritis / drug therapy
  • Plant Extracts / pharmacology*
  • Protective Agents / pharmacology
  • RAW 264.7 Cells


  • Collagen Type II
  • Interleukin-1beta
  • Plant Extracts
  • Protective Agents
  • turmeric extract