Curcumin Reduces Osteoarthritis Symptoms in Another Study

January 11, 2011

A study was conducted on 100 osteoarthritis patients and a proprietary curcumin ingredient.

Indena S.p.A. (Milan, Italy) has announced the results of a new study on its Meriva curcumin ingredient, published in the journal Alternative Medicine Review.

Meriva is an ingredient combination of curcumin (Curcuma longa L.) and soy phosphatidylcholine.

A total of 100 osteoarthritis patients were assigned to the “best available treatment” prescribed by their personal medical practitioners or the “best available treatment” plus Meriva (containing 200 mg of curcumin) daily for eight months.

Improvement of osteoarthritis was measured using several clinical endpoints, including Western Ontario and McMasters University (WOMAC) scores, Karnofsky Performance Scale scores, and treadmill walking performance tests. Levels of various inflammatory markers were also recorded.

After eight months, researchers detected “significant reductions in all primary clinical endpoints” and reductions in observed inflammatory markers.

Patients in the Meriva group also decreased use of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) by 63% compared to an 8% decrease noted in the control group.

The results of this long-term study follow similar findings from a smaller study published in the journal Manminerva Medica last year.

“This study represents the most ambitious attempt, to date, to evaluate the clinical efficacy and safety of curcumin as an anti-inflammatory agent,” said Giovanni Appendino, Indena scientific advisor and professor of organic chemistry at the University of Eastern Piedmont. “Although no direct comparison study of Meriva versus NSAIDs has been conducted, the decreased use of these drugs observed in the treatment group provides a rationale for evaluating whether the biochemical improvement in the inflammatory status associated with Meriva could eventually translate to a phase out of NSAIDs use, at least for mild-to-moderate OA.”

The full study on curcumin and osteoarthritis is available for download at the journal Alternative Medicine Review.