Simple SummaryVitamin C is an indispensable micronutrient in the human diet due to the multiple functions it carries out in the body. Reports of clinical studies have indicated that, when administered at high dosage by the intravenous route, vitamin C may exert beneficial antitumor effects in patients with advanced stage cancers, including those refractory to previous treatment with chemotherapy. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of the current scientific evidence concerning the different mechanisms of action by which high-dose vitamin C may kill tumor cells. A special focus will be given to those mechanisms that provide the rationale basis for tailoring vitamin C treatment according to specific molecular alterations present in the tumor and for the selection of the most appropriate companion drugs.High-dose vitamin C has been proposed as a potential therapeutic approach for patients with advanced tumors who failed previous treatment with chemotherapy. Due to vitamin C complex pharmacokinetics, only intravenous administration allows reaching sufficiently high plasma concentrations required for most of the antitumor effects observed in preclinical studies (>0.250 mM). Moreover, vitamin C entry into cells is tightly regulated by SVCT and GLUT transporters, and is cell type-dependent. Importantly, besides its well-recognized pro-oxidant effects, vitamin C modulates TET enzymes promoting DNA demethylation and acts as cofactor of HIF hydroxylases, whose activity is required for HIF-1 alpha proteasomal degradation. Furthermore, at pharmacological concentrations lower than those required for its pro-oxidant activity (<1 mM), vitamin C in specific genetic contexts may alter the DNA damage response by increasing 5-hydroxymethylcytosine levels. These more recently described vitamin C mechanisms offer new treatment opportunities for tumors with specific molecular defects (e.g., HIF-1 alpha over-expression or TET2, IDH1/2, and WT1 alterations). Moreover, vitamin C action at DNA levels may provide the rationale basis for combination therapies with PARP inhibitors and hypomethylating agents. This review outlines the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of vitamin C to be taken into account in designing clinical studies that evaluate its potential use as anticancer agent.

Giansanti, M., Karimi, T., Faraoni, I., Graziani, G. (2021). High-Dose Vitamin C: Preclinical Evidence for Tailoring Treatment in Cancer Patients. CANCERS, 13(6), 1-21 [10.3390/cancers13061428].

High-Dose Vitamin C: Preclinical Evidence for Tailoring Treatment in Cancer Patients

Faraoni, Isabella;Graziani, Grazia
2021-03-20

Abstract

Simple SummaryVitamin C is an indispensable micronutrient in the human diet due to the multiple functions it carries out in the body. Reports of clinical studies have indicated that, when administered at high dosage by the intravenous route, vitamin C may exert beneficial antitumor effects in patients with advanced stage cancers, including those refractory to previous treatment with chemotherapy. The aim of this article is to provide an overview of the current scientific evidence concerning the different mechanisms of action by which high-dose vitamin C may kill tumor cells. A special focus will be given to those mechanisms that provide the rationale basis for tailoring vitamin C treatment according to specific molecular alterations present in the tumor and for the selection of the most appropriate companion drugs.High-dose vitamin C has been proposed as a potential therapeutic approach for patients with advanced tumors who failed previous treatment with chemotherapy. Due to vitamin C complex pharmacokinetics, only intravenous administration allows reaching sufficiently high plasma concentrations required for most of the antitumor effects observed in preclinical studies (>0.250 mM). Moreover, vitamin C entry into cells is tightly regulated by SVCT and GLUT transporters, and is cell type-dependent. Importantly, besides its well-recognized pro-oxidant effects, vitamin C modulates TET enzymes promoting DNA demethylation and acts as cofactor of HIF hydroxylases, whose activity is required for HIF-1 alpha proteasomal degradation. Furthermore, at pharmacological concentrations lower than those required for its pro-oxidant activity (<1 mM), vitamin C in specific genetic contexts may alter the DNA damage response by increasing 5-hydroxymethylcytosine levels. These more recently described vitamin C mechanisms offer new treatment opportunities for tumors with specific molecular defects (e.g., HIF-1 alpha over-expression or TET2, IDH1/2, and WT1 alterations). Moreover, vitamin C action at DNA levels may provide the rationale basis for combination therapies with PARP inhibitors and hypomethylating agents. This review outlines the pharmacokinetic and pharmacodynamic properties of vitamin C to be taken into account in designing clinical studies that evaluate its potential use as anticancer agent.
Pubblicato
Rilevanza internazionale
Articolo
Esperti anonimi
Settore BIO/14
English
WT1
5-hydroxymethylcytosine
DNA damage
IDH1/2
PARP inhibitors
ROS
TET2
ascorbate
hypomethylating agents
vitamin C
Giansanti, M., Karimi, T., Faraoni, I., Graziani, G. (2021). High-Dose Vitamin C: Preclinical Evidence for Tailoring Treatment in Cancer Patients. CANCERS, 13(6), 1-21 [10.3390/cancers13061428].
Giansanti, M; Karimi, T; Faraoni, I; Graziani, G
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2108/275644
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