New oral agents may prevent radiation injury. Just use vitamin C?

By | July 10, 2009

figure1aResearchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and collaborators have discovered and analyzed several new compounds, collectively called the ”EUK-400 series,” which could someday be used to prevent radiation-induced injuries to kidneys, lungs, skin, intestinal tract and brains of radiological terrorism victims. The findings, which appear in the June issue of the Journal of Biological Inorganic Chemistry, describe new agents which can be given orally in pill form, which would more expedient in an emergency situation.

These agents are novel synthetic “antioxidants” that protect tissues against the kind of damage caused by agents such as “free radicals.” Free radicals, and similar toxic byproducts formed in the body, are implicated in many different types of tissue injury, including those caused by radiation exposure. Often, this kind of injury occurs months to years after radiation exposure. The BUSM researchers and their colleagues are developing agents that prevent injury even when given after the radiation exposure.

This paper describes a newer class of compounds, the ”EUK-400 series,” that are designed to be given as a pill. According to the researchers, experiments described in their paper prove that these agents are orally active. They also show that the new agents have several desirable “antioxidant” activities, and protect cells in a “cell death” model.

These same BUSM researchers and collaborators had previously discovered novel synthetic antioxidants that effectively mitigate radiation injuries, but had to be given by injection. ”

via New oral agents may prevent injury after radiation exposure.

Drug companies hate that they can’t patent Vitamin C.

Doctors are to begin clinical trials to investigate whether cancer patients should be given huge doses of vitamin C alongside conventional drugs after research suggested the vitamin could dramatically boost survival rates.

High doses of vitamin C reduced the growth of aggressive tumours by between 41% and 53% when injected into mice affected by the disease, researchers found. The vitamin was injected directly into the bloodstream because animals, including humans, naturally limit how much vitamin C they absorb from food. – guarduk

Until a genetic mutation in our past, our bodies used to make Vitamin C from sugar.

Like plants, most mammals (with the exception of humans and guinea pigs) make their ascorbic acid from glucose and can make glucose from ascorbic acid. Some primates, remote ancestors of humans, underwent a genetic mutation about 40-45 million years ago and haven’t been able to make “vitamin C” since. Therefore living humans need nowadays to get all “vitamin C” from food. Some scientists think that the loss of human ability to make “vitamin C” may have caused Homo sapiens’ rapid evolution into modern man. – wiki

Leave a Reply