Inhibition of 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA)-induced Mammary Tumorigenesis and DMBA-DNA Adduct Formation by Curcumin

Cancer Lett. 1996 Jun 5;103(2):137-41. doi: 10.1016/0304-3835(96)04224-3.


Curcumin, a constituent of the traditional Indian spice and medicine turmeric, was evaluated for its capacity to inhibit the mammary tumor initiating activity of 7,12-dimethylbenz[a]anthracene (DMBA) and the in vivo formation of mammary DMBA-DNA adducts in the female rat. Administration (i.p.) of curcumin at 100 mg/kg and 200 mg/kg doses was associated with a significant decrease in the number of palpable mammary tumors and mammary adenocarcinomas. The in vivo formation of mammary DMBA-DNA adducts also was depressed for animals administered curcumin doses from 50 mg/kg to 200 mg/kg. There was, however, no significant enhancement of liver glutathione-S-transferase activity following curcumin administration. Therefore, curcumin when administered i.p. can act as an effective chemopreventative agent towards DMBA-induced rat mammary tumorigenesis and mammary adduct formation.

MeSH terms

  • 9,10-Dimethyl-1,2-benzanthracene / antagonists & inhibitors*
  • Animals
  • Antineoplastic Agents / pharmacology*
  • Curcumin / pharmacology*
  • DNA Adducts / chemistry
  • DNA, Neoplasm / chemistry
  • Female
  • Glutathione Transferase / metabolism
  • Liver / enzymology
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental / chemically induced*
  • Mammary Neoplasms, Experimental / pathology
  • Rats
  • Rats, Sprague-Dawley


  • Antineoplastic Agents
  • DNA Adducts
  • DNA, Neoplasm
  • 9,10-Dimethyl-1,2-benzanthracene
  • Glutathione Transferase
  • Curcumin