, Volume 24, Issue 6, pp 377–388 | Cite as

Curcuma longa extract reduces inflammatory and oxidative stress biomarkers in osteoarthritis of knee: a four-month, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled trial

  • Shobhit Srivastava
  • Anil K. SaksenaEmail author
  • Sanjay Khattri
  • Santosh Kumar
  • Raghubendra Singh Dagur
Original Article


Background and purpose

Curcuma longa L. (CL), an Indian herb, has been used to treat many disorders because of its wide spectrum of pharmacological activities. It has been shown to exhibit anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, and is being used as herbal remedy since ancient times. Osteoarthritis of knee (KOA) is a chronic painful disorder in which prolong use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or steroids may result into many serious side effects; hence, there is a need to develop herbal drugs, having good analgesia without side effects. Therefore, we planned to evaluate the efficacy of CL in KOA.


The study was designed as a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial in patients of KOA. After obtaining ethical clearance and written informed consent, a total of 160 patients of KOA were randomly enrolled into two groups to receive either CL extract or placebo along with the standard drug regimen. The patients were assessed on day 0, day 60, and day 120. On the days of their visit, the clinical prognosis was assessed by visual analog scale (VAS) and Western Ontario and McMaster Universities (WOMAC) Osteoarthritis index. On these days, the radiographs were also taken for Kellgren and Lawrence grading and blood samples were collected for assessing the changes in levels of IL-1β and biomarkers of oxidative stress, such as reactive oxygen species and malondialdehyde (MDA).


Over all significant improvement was observed in the patients of CL extract group as compared to placebo group. Clinically, the VAS and WOMAC scores became better, and simultaneously, the levels of biomarkers, viz., IL-1β, ROS, and MDA, were also significantly (p < 0.05) improved.


It may be concluded that on chronic administration, CL suppresses inflammation and brings clinical improvement in patients of KOA, which may be observed by decreased level of IL-1β and VAS/WOMAC scores, respectively. At the same time, CL decreases the oxidative stress also.


Osteoarthritis of knee Curcuma longa L. WOMAC Inflammatory biomarkers 



We are thankful to COUNCIL OF SCIENTIFIC AND INDUSTRIAL RESEARCH (CSIR), India for providing Senior Research Fellowship to MR. SHOBHIT SRIVASTAVA vide file no. 09/910/0006/2012-EMR-I for the study. Our sincere thanks to The Himalaya Drug Company, Bangalore, India for providing capsules of CL extract and placebo for the study. We are also thankful to Dr. A.K.S. Rawat, Scientist and Head, Department of Pharmacognosy and Ethnopharmacology, CSIR-National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow for carrying out the finger print analysis of the CL extract capsules.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing 2016

Authors and Affiliations

  • Shobhit Srivastava
    • 1
  • Anil K. Saksena
    • 1
    Email author
  • Sanjay Khattri
    • 1
  • Santosh Kumar
    • 2
  • Raghubendra Singh Dagur
    • 3
  1. 1.Department of Pharmacology and TherapeuticsKing George’s Medical UniversityLucknowIndia
  2. 2.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryKing George’s Medical UniversityLucknowIndia
  3. 3.Centre for Advance ResearchKing George’s Medical UniversityLucknowIndia

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