Although curcumin has been studied as a potential anticancer drug targeting multiple signaling molecules, the role of oncogenic Src and Ras in curcumin sensitivity remains unknown. Using HAG-1 human adenocarcinoma cells transfected with either activated Src or Ras, we investigated here the functional role of these oncogenes in curcumin sensitivity. Activation of either Src or Ras did not confer resistance to curcumin, compared to vehicle-transfected cells. Curcumin enhanced Erk1/2 predominantly in Ras-activated cells, but inhibited Akt and its downstream molecules (mTOR and S6K1) regardless of these oncogene activations. The sub-G0/G1 apoptotic populations were substantially increased with demonstrable cleavage of PARP, but this increase was most prominent in Src-activated cells. Suppression of Bcl-xL level and enhanced expression of Bax were demonstrated in Src-activated, but not Ras-activated cells. By contrast, drastic increases of G(2)/M cell populations were seen in Ras-activated cells rather than Src-activated cells, suggesting a potential role of Ras/Erk1/2 activation in curcumin-induced G(2)/M arrest These data indicate that curcumin-induced growth inhibition would be mediated mainly by G(2)/M arrest in Ras-driven cells but by apoptosis induction in Src-driven cells, providing a mechanistic rationale for the potential use of curcumin in the treatment of human cancers with activated Src or Ras. (C) 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.