The Roles and Mechanisms of Actions of Vitamin C in Bone: New Developments.
J Bone Miner Res. 2015 Sep 11. Epub 2015 Sep 11. PMID: 26358868
Vitamin C is an important antioxidant and cofactor which is involved in the regulation of development, function and maintenance of several cell types in the body. Deficiencies in vitamin C can lead to conditions such as scurvy, which, among other ailments, causes gingivia, bone pain and impaired wound healing. This review examines the functional importance of vitamin C as it relates to the development and maintenance of bone tissues. Analysis of several epidemiological studies and genetic mouse models regarding the effect of vitamin C shows a positive effect on bone health. Overall, vitamin C exerts a positive effect on trabecular bone formation by influencing expression of bone matrix genes in osteoblasts. Recent studies on the molecular pathway for vitamin C actions that include direct effects of vitamin C on transcriptional regulation of target genes by influencing the activity of transcription factors and by epigenetic modification of key genes involved in skeletal development and maintenance are discussed. With an understanding of mechanisms involved in the uptake and metabolism of vitamin C and knowledge of precise molecular pathways for vitamin C actions in bone cells, it is possible that novel therapeutic strategies can be developed or existing therapies can be modified for the treatment of osteoporotic fractures. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.