Absorption and tissue distribution of curcumin in rats

Toxicology. 1980;16(3):259-65. doi: 10.1016/0300-483x(80)90122-5.


After oral administration of 400 mg curcumin to rats, about 60% of the dose was absorbed. No curcumin was detectable in urine. The urinary excretion of conjugated glucuronides and sulfates significantly increased. No curcumin was present in heart blood. Only traces (less than 5 microgram/ml) in portal blood and negligible quantities in liver and kidney (< 20 micrograms/tissue) were observed from 15 min upto 24 h after administration of curcumin. At the end of 24 h the concentration of curcumin remaining in the lower part of the gut namely caecum and large intestine amounted to 38% of the quantity administered.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Catechols / metabolism*
  • Curcumin / blood
  • Curcumin / metabolism*
  • Curcumin / urine
  • Glucuronates / urine
  • Intestinal Absorption
  • Male
  • Rats
  • Sulfates / urine
  • Tissue Distribution


  • Catechols
  • Glucuronates
  • Sulfates
  • Curcumin