Curcumin (2017) and Pterygium


Learn more about pterygium.


Researchers invested whether curcumin, the active component of turmeric might be useful in treating pterygium due to its capacity to inhibit cell growth.

In the lab they grew cell tissue which produces pterygiums in humans. They incubated it with curcumin, measuring growth at different time periods and at different concentrations. They found that incubation for 48 hours significantly inhibited growth and caused cell death of the pterygium tissue.

They concluded that curcumin may potentially be useful in treating pterygium in the 'near future.'

Researchers: C.W. Lu, J.L. Hao, L. Yao, et al
Published: International Journal of Molecular Medicine, April, 2017.

Editor's note: this is very new (2017) and the dosage is unknown outside of a lab situation, however, we should keep an eye on the potential use.

Noting that curcumin has been historically extensively used to treat many conditions, researchers discussed making curcumin more bioavailable. The authors point out that a number of studies find value in treating corneal diseases, conjunctivitis, anterior uveitis, pterygium and others. This is because of its anti-inflammatory, anti-allergy, anti-oxidative stress, anti-osmotic capacity. In addition, it helps limit the oxidation of oily lipids, regulates calcium balance, isolates free radicals, helps moderate protein changes in cataracts, and protects the eye in glaucoma.

Researchers: X.F. Liu, J.L. Hao, et al
Published: Frontiers in Pharmacology, February, 2017.

Editor's note: regarding bioavailability, curcumin is not water soluable and so if you are adding turmeric to your food for therapeutic purposes you should briefly saute it in oil first.


Researchers investigated the value of curcumin in treating pterygium tissue and restricting the re-growth of pterygiums after surgery.

In a study incubating pterygium cell tissue with curcumin the scientists found that, depending on dosage and time of incubation, that curcumin acted to inhibit growth of the tissue and induce cell death (apoptosis) of the pterygium tissue.

Researchers: M. Zhang, F. Bian, et al
Published: Journal of Huazhong University of Science and Technology, June, 20017.