Affiliation: Department of Pharmacology, Ross University School of Medicine, 630 US Hwy 1, North Brunswick, NJ 08902, USA.
The polyphenol natural product curcumin possesses a plethora of biological and pharmacological properties. For years, much interest has been placed in the development and use of curcumin and its derivatives for the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular, diabetic, and neurodegenerative diseases, as well as cancer. Increasing evidence suggests that curcumin displays amazing molecular versatility, and the number of its proposed cellular targets grows as the research continues. The mammalian target of rapamycin (mTOR) is a master kinase, regulating cell growth/proliferation, survival, and motility. Dysregulated mTOR signaling occurs frequently in cancer, and targeting mTOR signaling is a promising strategy for cancer therapy. Recent studies have identified mTOR as a novel target of curcumin. Here we focus on reviewing current knowledge regarding the effects of curcumin on mTOR signaling for better understanding the anticancer mechanism of curcumin. The emerging studies of mTOR signaling and clinical studies on curcumin with cancer patients are also discussed here.