Effects of curcumin or/and 5-FU on proliferation-, invasion-, metastatic gene products and NF-κB expression in HCT116 and HCT116R cells in alginate culture. Curcumin increases 5-FU to inhibit the expression of NF-κB and NF-κB-regulated gene products in HCT116 (A) and HCT116R (B) cells encapsulated in alginate beads. Decreased expression of CXCR4, MMP9 and NF-κB in alginate beads after 14 days of culture was confirmed by quantitative densitometry. Western blots shown are representative of three independent experiments. The housekeeping protein β-actin served as a positive loading control in all experiments. Values were compared with the control and statistically significant values with p < 0.05 were designated by an asterisk (*).