Anti-inflammatory and Anti-oxidant Properties of Curcuma longa (Turmeric) Versus Zingiber officinale (Ginger) Rhizomes in Rat Adjuvant-Induced Arthritis


Turmeric (rich in curcuminoids) and ginger (rich in gingerols and shogaols) rhizomes have been widely used as dietary spices and to treat different diseases in Ayurveda/Chinese medicine since antiquity. Here, we compared the anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant activity of these two plants in rat adjuvant-induced arthritis (AIA). Both plants (at dose 200 mg/kg body weight) significantly suppressed (but with different degrees) the incidence and severity of arthritis by increasing/decreasing the production of anti-inflammatory/pro-inflammatory cytokines, respectively, and activating the anti-oxidant defence system. The anti-arthritic activity of turmeric exceeded that of ginger and indomethacin (a non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug), especially when the treatment started from the day of arthritis induction. The percentage of disease recovery was 4.6–8.3% and 10.2% more in turmeric compared with ginger and indomethacin (P < 0.05), respectively. The present study proves the anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant activity of turmeric over ginger and indomethacin, which may have beneficial effects against rheumatoid arthritis onset/progression as shown in AIA rat model.

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The authors thank Mr. Ali A. Al-Kahtani our lab technician, for animal care. This study was supported by the Deanship of Scientific Research, King Faisal University, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (90066 to G. R.).

Conflicts of Interest

The authors have no potential financial conflicts of interest.

Author contributions

G. R. planned the study (with assistance from M. A. A.-K.), designed and carried out all experiments (except for that in Table 2, which were carried out by W. M. E.-S.), performed the statistical analysis and summarized the results. G. R. drafted the manuscript with assistance from M. A. A.-K. and W. M. E.-S.

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Correspondence to Gamal Ramadan.

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Ramadan, G., Al-Kahtani, M.A. & El-Sayed, W.M. Anti-inflammatory and Anti-oxidant Properties of Curcuma longa (Turmeric) Versus Zingiber officinale (Ginger) Rhizomes in Rat Adjuvant-Induced Arthritis. Inflammation 34, 291–301 (2011).

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  • rat adjuvant-induced arthritis
  • anti-inflammatory/anti-oxidant activity
  • Curcuma longa
  • indomethacin
  • Zingiber officinale