Latent activity of curcumin against leishmaniasis in vitro

Danish Saleheen, Syed Atif Ali, Khalid Ashfaq, Anwar Ali Siddiqui, Ajmal Agha, Muhammad Masoom Yasinzai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

87 Citations (Scopus)


In this study the anti-proliferative effect of curcumin (curcuma longa) that is the active ingredient of ground dried rhizome has been studied against three local and three reference leishmanial strains, Leishmania major, Leishmania tropica and Leishmania infantum (Pakistani isolate). Curcumin has shown an average IC50 of 5.3 μM against promastigotes of various leishmanial strains which is much lower as compared with pentamidine that is one of the basic treatments against leishmaniasis. The main draw back attributed to these assays performed on promastigotes is the heterogeneity of results compared with those obtained with intracellular amastigotes or with in vivo effect. We also tested activity of curcumin against axenic amastigote like cells (AALC) of L. major strain (MHOM/PK/88/DESTO). Curcumin proves to be far more potent then pentamidine against AALC which further strengthens the fact about its leishmaniacidal activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)386-389
Number of pages4
JournalBiological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Axenic amastigote like cell
  • Curcumin
  • Leishmania
  • Leishmanial promastigotes


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