Background: Curcumin is an active compound extracted from the rhizomes of Curcuma longa L. (Turmeric). It possesses a di-phenolic structure and there are three important fractions of curcumin namely curcumin, mono-desmethoxycurcumin and bis-desmethoxycurcumin. Curcumin is having high medicinal value. It is widely available in Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani medicine formulations to treat various diseases. It is effective against microbial pathogens like bacteria, virus and fungi. It is highly potent and kills cancerous cells. Curcumin exhibits antioxidant activity and reduces lipoperoxidation. Cardioprotective nature of curcumin is also reported.
Conclusion: It can protect the brain from neurodegenerative disorders caused by oxidative stress. It is safe to use in humans and animals. In addition to its medicinal value, it is also having numerous commercial applications like dyeing, cooking purposes, antiseptics, etc. The cultivation of turmeric by means of inorganic inputs making it contaminated with heavy metals is reported. Improving the biological use of curcumin provides healthy humankind and increases the economic status of a country.