High dose Vitamin C slows tumour growth and reduces side-effects

High dose Vitamin C slows tumour growth and reduces side-effects

IVC, brain cancer and non-small cell lung cancer

High dose vitamin C, obtained through Intravenous Vitamin C (IVC) injections has been shown to improve the success of chemotherapy and radiotherapy, without increasing the side effects. In a major step forward, research by the University of Iowa Holden Comprehensive Cancer Center completed the first phase of a number of planned clinical trials with a phase I clinical trial on GBM, brain cancer, and preliminary results of a phase II clinical trial on Grade 4 non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC) patients (published: Cancer Cell, March 30th, 2017). 

Although average plasma levels of vitamin C in humans are around 70 micromoles (μM), the IVC elevated these to around 20,000 micromoles. Research by the University of Iowa over the past four decades has shown that high doses in laboratory experiments are successful at inhibiting and killing cancer cells, but that ingesting vitamin C never achieves these levels because the body regulates the plasma levels on ingestion; whereas injecting the vitamin C intravenously allows the same high doses used in lab experiments to reach the tumours.

The High Dose vitamin C also endures longer; normal vitamin C is water soluble and so is destroyed in the body after approximately 2 hours.

In a safety check, patients with brain cancer on chemo- or radiotherapy saw no significant side effects after 9 months usage.

The work was conducted by Bryan Allen author of the paper and Assistant Professor of Radiation Oncology and the University of Iowa, and Professors Douglas Spitz and Garry Buettner.

In this first Clinical Trial phase, patients with glioblastoma (GBM) brain cancer survived on average 18-22 months compared with those only receiving conventional treatment who on average survive 14 – 16 months.

Similar findings occurred with NSCLC patients.

High dose vitamin C works on its own or with chemo- and radiotherapy

The researchers believe they are closer to showing exactly how high dose vitamin C works. Cancer cells have faulty biochemistry, and their mitochondria produce high levels of labile iron, or redox-active iron molecules. The vitamin C reacts with these molecules and produces hydrogen peroxide-derived free radicals, which sensitise the cancer cells, damaging them so that the chemo- and radiotherapy kill more of them.

The vitamin C on its own seemed also to pre-sensitise cancer cells and lead to their death, without the presence of chemotherapy or radiotherapy.

Similar observations have been made in research in recent years with both exercise and Hyperbaric Oxygen.

Go to: A practical guide to having High Dose vitamin C (IVC) injections

The researchers are now undergoing more Clinical Studies but stated that the mechanism of action they had found inside the mitochondria would almost certainly be the same for ‘pharmacological ascorbate’ in any cancer.

In the next phase of Clinical Trials, researchers will again be studying lung and brain cancer patients to more accurately measure increased survival times and with a larger base.


2017 Research
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