Conjugation of curcumin and gold with green chemistry is an approach to improve the effectiveness of curcumin as anti-fibrosis. In this work, curcumin and gold were conjugated to deliver curcumin to the liver. Curcumin-gold nanoparticles (cAuNPs) were prepared by varying curcumin pH and concentration. The successful of cAuNPs formation were identified by using UV-visible and FTIR spectrophotometers. The particle size and morphology were analyzed using particle size analyzer and cryo-TEM respectively. In vitro antioxidant assay was performed to determine the curcumin activity after conjugation. Physical and chemical stabilities of cAuNPs were studied for one month at 5 °C, 25 °C, and 40 °C. Furthermore, the cAuNPs activity to modulate early marker of fibrosis was tested on NIH/3T3 cells. The optimum condition for cAuNPs synthesis was by using 1.5 mM curcumin at pH 9.3. As compared to free curcumin, cAuNPs showed higher antioxidant activity and maintained the nanosize after stored for one month. In line with the antioxidant activity, cAuNPs 0.25⁻1 μg/mL reduced the collagen production by NIH/3T3 cells. More importantly, cAuNPs did not demonstrate any effect on the development of chicken embryo. Taken together, the attachment of gold to curcumin in the form of cAuNPs is promising for curcumin targeting to treat hepatic fibrosis.
Keywords: NIH/3T3; curcumin; curcumin-gold nanoparticle; in ovo; liver fibrosis.