A new study found that high doses of Vitamin C can stop the growth of cancer cells. A team of researchers from the medicine department conducted the study that actually is taking place since 1970s, when studies to determinate the potential of Vitamin C as a source to fight cancer, began.
The researchers supplemented high doses of vitamin C to mice that have KRAS or BRAF mutations of colorectal cancer. The mutations of these kind of genes are linked to the development of many types of cancer cell. The study showed that the vitamin that is commonly found in fruits such as oranges can stop the tumor cell growth.
‘Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer. About 93,000 people are diagnosed with this disease in the United States each year.’
The researchers reported that, "Cultured CRC cells harboring KRAS or BRAF mutations are selectively killed when exposed to high levels of vitamin C."
The current study found that colorectal cancer cells with mutations handle vitamin C differently than other cells, and this difference ultimately kills them.
Vitamin C, also called ascorbic acid, becomes oxidized and is transformed into a new compound called dehydroascorbic acid (DHA). Natural antioxidants in the cancer cell attempt to convert the DHA back to ascorbic acid. In the process, these antioxidants are depleted, and the cell dies from oxidative stress.
Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer. Each year, nearly 93,000 people are diagnosed with this disease in the United States. Studies have shown that half of those cases carry either KRAS or BRAF mutations. These mutations are more aggressive and does not respond well to current therapies.
Vitamin C therapy can be used to fight Colorectal Cancer and also other types of the disease driven by KRAS mutations such as pancreatic cancer.
The study is published in the journal Science.