The effects of vitamin C supplementation on protein oxidation in healthy volunteers

Julie L. Carty, Ruth J. Bevan, Helen Waller, Nalini Mistry, Marcus S. Cooke, Joseph Lunec, Helen R. Griffiths*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We have investigated vitamin C supplementation effects on immunoglobulin oxidation (carbonyls) and total plasma protein sulfhydryls in healthy human volunteers. After receiving placebo, plasma ascorbate and oxidation markers were unchanged. Following 5 weeks supplementation with vitamin C (400 mg/day), plasma ascorbate increased but no significant effect on protein oxidation was observed. At 10 and 15 weeks supplementation, carbonyl levels were significantly reduced (P < 0.01) in subjects with low baseline ascorbate (29.51 ± 5.3 μM) but not in those with normal baseline ascorbate (51.81 ± 2.3 μM). To eliminate any effect from seasonal variation in dietary antioxidant intake, a second phase was undertaken. Subjects on vitamin C for 15 weeks were randomly assigned to receive either placebo or vitamin C. No difference in plasma sulfhydryl content was observed. Subjects withdrawn from supplementation showed an increase in immunoglobulin carbonyl content (P < 0.01). This demonstrates that dietary vitamin C supplementation can reduce certain types of oxidative protein damage in subjects with low basal antioxidant. (C) 2000 Academic Press.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)729-735
Number of pages7
JournalBiochemical and Biophysical Research Communications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jul 2000


  • oxidative biomarker
  • oxidative stress
  • protein carbonyls
  • supplementation
  • vitamin C


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