Over the past decades curcuminoids have been extensively studied for their biological activities such as antiulcer, antifibrotic, antiviral, antibacterial, antiprotozoal, antimutagenic, antifertility, antidiabetic, anticoagulant, antivenom, antioxidant, antihypotensive, antihypocholesteremic, and anticancer activities. With the perception of limited toxicity and cost, these compounds forms an integral part of cancer research and is well established as a potential anticancer agent. However, only few studies have focused on the other bioactive molecules of turmeric, known as non-curcuminoids, which are also equally potent as curcuminoids. This review aims to explore the comprehensive potency including the identification, physicochemical properties, and anticancer mechanism inclusive of molecular docking studies of non-curcuminoids such as turmerones, elemene, furanodiene (FN), bisacurone, germacrone, calebin A (CA), curdione, and cyclocurcumin. An insight into the clinical studies of these curcumin-free compounds are also discussed which provides ample evidence that favors the therapeutic potential of these compounds. Like curcuminoids, limited solubility and bioavailability are the most fragile domain, which circumscribe further applications of these compounds. Thus, this review credits the encapsulation of non-curcuminoid components in diverse drug delivery systems such as co-crystals, solid lipid nanoparticles, liposomes, microspheres, polar-non-polar sandwich (PNS) technology, which help abolish their shortcomings and flaunt their ostentatious benefits as anticancer activities.
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