A very recent (January 2016) review of general aspects of vitamin C in human health, including:
- Vitamin C interactions with the metabolism, physiology, enzymology and others;
- Mechanisms of transport and absorption;
- Experimental findings, current knowledge, current unknowns;
and many other features of Vitamin C.
Vitamin C: the known, the unknown, and Goldilocks.
1Molecular and Clinical Nutrition Section, Digestive Diseases Branch, National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, 20892-1372, USA.
Vitamin C (Ascorbic acid, abbreviated as AA; the terms vitamin C and ascorbic acid are used interchangeably) is synthesized by all plants and most animals (Smirnoff et al., 2001). It is a vitamin for humans because the gene for gulonolactone oxidase, the terminal enzyme in the AA synthesis pathway has undergone mutations that make it non-functional (Linster & Van Schaftingen, 2007). Animals that have lost the ability to synthesize ascorbic acid do not have a phylogenetic relationship with each other. These animals include non-human primates, guinea pigs, capybara and some birds and fish (Chaudhuri & Chatterjee, 1969, Chatterjee, 1973, Cueto et al., 2000). Deficiency of ascorbic acid produces the fatal disease scurvy, which can be cured only by the administration of vitamin C.
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