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Open AccessArticle

Low Vitamin C Status in Patients with Cancer Is Associated with Patient and Tumor Characteristics

1
Mackenzie Cancer Research Group, Department of Pathology and Biomedical Science, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
2
Biostatistics and Computational Biology Unit, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
3
Cancer Society Tissue Bank, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
4
Centre for Free Radical Research, Department of Pathology and Biomedical Science, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
5
Nutrition in Medicine Research Group, Department of Pathology and Biomedical Science, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
6
Canterbury Regional Cancer and Hematology Service, Canterbury District Health Board, and Department of Medicine, University of Otago Christchurch, Christchurch 8011, New Zealand
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Nutrients 2020, 12(8), 2338; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12082338
Received: 7 July 2020 / Revised: 30 July 2020 / Accepted: 3 August 2020 / Published: 5 August 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vitamin C: From Bench to Bedside)
Vitamin C (ascorbate) acts as an antioxidant and enzyme cofactor, and plays a vital role in human health. Vitamin C status can be affected by illness, with low levels being associated with disease due to accelerated turnover. However, robust data on the ascorbate status of patients with cancer are sparse. This study aimed to accurately measure ascorbate concentrations in plasma from patients with cancer, and determine associations with patient or tumor characteristics. We recruited 150 fasting patients with cancer (of 199 total recruited) from two cohorts, either prior to cancer surgery or during cancer chemo- or immunotherapy. A significant number of patients with cancer had inadequate plasma ascorbate concentrations. Low plasma status was more prevalent in patients undergoing cancer therapy. Ascorbate status was higher in women than in men, and exercising patients had higher levels than sedentary patients. Our study may prompt increased vigilance of ascorbate status in cancer patients. View Full-Text
Keywords: ascorbate; breast cancer; colorectal cancer; chemotherapy; immunotherapy; surgery; exercise ascorbate; breast cancer; colorectal cancer; chemotherapy; immunotherapy; surgery; exercise
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White, R.; Nonis, M.; Pearson, J.F.; Burgess, E.; Morrin, H.R.; Pullar, J.M.; Spencer, E.; Vissers, M.C.M.; Robinson, B.A.; Dachs, G.U. Low Vitamin C Status in Patients with Cancer Is Associated with Patient and Tumor Characteristics. Nutrients 2020, 12, 2338.

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