Curcumin may be valuable adjuvant therapy to COVID-19 treatment, says recent study

A recent study found that Curcumin with Piperine may have potential as an adjuvant treatment of COVID-19.

A recent study published in Frontiers of Pharmacology1 found that the curcumin with piperine (Curcumin C3 Complex from Sabinsa, based in East Windsor, NJ) may be an effective adjuvant therapy for the treatment of COVID-19. In the double-blind, randomized, controlled trial, 70 symptomatic adults with positive COVID-19 antigen tests were all given standard COVID-19 treatment. The control group received probiotics twice per day in addition to the standard treatment and the experimental group received the curcumin supplement twice per day in addition to the standard therapy.

Results showed that compared to control patients, the curcumin group showed earlier symptomatic recovery of fever, cough, sore throat and breathlessness, less deterioration over the period of hospital, lower incidence of red flag signs, and better ability to maintain oxygen saturation above 94% on room air throughout hospital stay. Patients in the curcumin group were also able to maintain oxygen saturation above 94% on room air for more days and fewer patients in the curcumin group required oxygen therapy, failed to maintain oxygen saturation above 88%, or required intubation and mechanical ventilation to maintain oxygen saturation.

The subjects were divided into mild, moderate, and severe subgroups. Results showed that while the duration of hospitalization was essentially the same for the mild subgroups in both control and curcumin groups, it was significantly lower in the moderate and severe curcumin subgroups. Fewer patients in the severe curcumin subgroup required mechanical ventilation as well. While there were no deaths in the mild and moderate curcumin subgroups, there was one death out of the 30 in the mild control subgroup, and five deaths out of 25 in the moderate control subgroups. Fewer deaths occurred in the severe curcumin subgroup (two out of 15) compared to the severe control subgroup (five out of 15).

The potential mechanism of action for curcumin’s benefits is the reduction of inflammation, since the known pathophysiology of COVID-19 involves life-threatening inflammatory reactions, cytokine storms, and coagulopathy. "While larger trials will be needed to establish the findings of the study on a firmer footing, it is gratifying to learn of these promising preliminary results," said Muhammed Majeed, PhD, founder and chairman of Sami-Sabinsa group, in a press release.


  1. Pawar KS et al. “Oral curcumin with piperine as adjuvant therapy for the treatment of COVID-19: a randomized clinical trial.” Frontiers of Pharmacology, vol. 12 (2021)