Insight on Vit C

Dom Spinella dspinella at chugaibio.com
Wed Dec 3 16:52:25 EST 1997

Ralph L. Samson writes:

> Dear Readers,
> Some of you might be interested in a new insight on the role of
> Vitamin C in the immune system.
Yes. Its too bad your posting doesn't provide it.

>There has been a lot of hype about what
> Vitamin C can do and cannot do in various dosages.

To which your posting adds, albeit negligably.

> Based on some of my personal experiences with Vitamin C, and many
> readings about it, and on some thoughtful analysis, I have come to the
> conclusion that Vitamin C is literally a fuel of the immune system.

"Fuel" of the immune system?  Meaning what ... that lymphoid cells use
it as an energy source? Bull.

> of the things that intrigued me is the relative simplicity of the molec-
> ular structure of Vitamin C.

Even more impressive is the relative simplicity of your analysis.

 Also, it closely resembles glucose, a fuel,
> in structure. Also, in animals that make their own Vitamin C, their livers
> make Vitamin C from glucose. What an ingenious scheme to have the liver
> convert glucose to another form that is specific to the immune system to
> ensure its getting to the far reaches of the immune system, like the
> macrophages, without being grabbed by other cells.

So vitamin C is "specific" to the immune system and not used by other
cells?  That's nonsense.  And macrophages constitute the "far reaches"
of the immune system?  Your understanding of immunology is apperntly
even less than your understanding of biochemistry.

> If this were true, how would one take advantage of this? Under
> normal, non-attack conditions, one would want to maintain some reasonable
> level of supply so as to maintain a minimum level throughout the day.
> Since Vitamin C disappears from plasma in less than 12 hours, one would
> need to take it at least three times a day. To obtain better consistency
> it is probably better to take it four times a day.

Hell, why not take it in continuous I.V. drip?

> When the immune system is under attack, it needs more fuel. This
> is accomplished by taking in more fuel (Vitamin C). Taking it more often
> is probably more efficient than taking larger doses.
> How else can one take advantage of this? Vaccinations, if given
> a few hours after ingesting Vitamin C, are less likely to produce unwanted
> side effects, particularly if given subcutaneously or intramuscularly,
> since these are easier for the immune system to defend against.
And where are the data to support this claim?  Oh -- I forgot: 
"personal experience and thoughtful analysis"  Why is it, do you think,
that vitamin C ought to soup up the beneficial effects of an immune
response but turn down the unwanted side-effects?

 Oral or
> intravenous injections are much harder to defend against.

What is it exactly that are you are trying to "defend against" in these

> With vaccinations much safer, new options are opened. Could one
> take viral cultures or cancerous cells from a subject and, some time after 
> Vitamin C ingestion, vaccinate, subcutaneously or intramuscularly, with
> those "bad things" and produce antibodies which would then disperse to
> the rest of the body and act against the "bad things"? 

So now your suggestion is that vitamin C is some sort of adjuvant?
Again, where's your data?

To increase the
> level of antibodies, one could vaccinate simultaneously in both arms and
> both legs. Then after that effect is complete, say four days, vaccinate
> again. This could be repeated four more times over a total of 21 days.
> While it could be continued, because the large antibodies have half-lives
> of 23 days, this seems a reasonably appropriate time to stop and await
> the results. This approach would work for both cancer and AIDS.

You really don't have a clue about how vaccines or antibodies work do
you -- much less the T, B, and antigen presenting cells that are really
the targets of vaccines!

 Note that the vaccination is only into subjects who have the same "bad
things" elsewhere in their body.

So if the "bad things" are already in the body, what's the benefit of
introducing more by injection?  Do you think that you might treat a
patient with Ebola virus by injecting him with more virus (and of course
a big dose of vitamin C)?  Vaccines don't work like that.

> Note that in an article in the Atlantic Monthly

that noted peer reviewed biomedical journal

 and in a recent
> book, 

by Shirly Mclaine?

successful vaccination against cancer was achieved in Europe. In
> order to get the immune system to react, the cancer cells had to be
> mutated. I don't believe this would have been necessary if the immune
> system had been preenergized with Vitamin C.

Do you have the slightest clue why the cancer cells needed to me
mutated?  It has nothing to do with the "energy level" of the immune
system (whatever that means) and much to do with breaking tolerance. 
Once again the superficiality of your "knowledge" is glaring.

> Also note that in this approach, a recurrence can be treated
> with a new set of vaccinations. Also, spread of the viral infection 
> or metastasizing of the cancer is overcome since the antibodies are
> dispersed throughout the body.
> I would appreciate any comments and thoughts on the foregoing
> and would be happy to answer any questions.
> Regards, Ralph L. Samson

Well Ralph, since you asked for comments, I'd say that you'd better
start by asking some questions rather than offering to answer them. If
you're going to post to newsgroups read by practicing scientists and
physicians (rather than the "alt." groups where one typically finds this
kind of psudoscientific nonsense), you'd be well advised to pick up at
least an introductory textbook of immunology, because it's apparent that
you don't know the first thing about the subject.  Vitamin C may indeed
be an important nutrient whose role in maintaining health is
underappreciated (although with all the hype out in the lay press, I
doubt it's underappreciated) -- but your posting does nothing to shed
additional light on the subject.  

Have a nice day.  -- Dom Spinella, Ph.D.

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