One of the herb's key active ingredients - an antioxidant called curcumin - appears to have a quelling effect on the activity of human papillomavirus (HPV), researchers said.

HPV is a virus that promotes the development of cervical and oral cancer. There is no cure, but curcumin may offer a means of future control, they said.

"Turmeric has established antiviral and anti-cancer properties," said corresponding author Dr Alok Mishra of Emory University, Atlanta, US.

"And according to our new findings, we could say that it is good for oral health too," he said.

The new research indicates that curcumin turns down the expression of HPV in infected oral cancer cells by downregulating the levels of cellular transcription factors AP-1 and NF-kB.

Latest News from Lifestyle News Desk