Boosting daily requirement of vitamin C may be helpful in curbing the development of leukemia, a deadly blood cancer, a study has found.Previous studies have shown that people with lower levels of ascorbate (vitamin C) are at an increased cancer risk but the reasons were not fully understood.Read also:Lack of Vitamin E in kids may affect learning skills
According to a study:
- The new study showed that stem cells soak up unusually high levels of vitamin C.
- In addition,which then regulates the cell function and suppresses the development of leukemia.
- Stem cells use ascorbate to regulate the abundance of certain chemical modifications on DNA, which are part of the epigenome.
- The epigenome is a set of mechanisms inside a cell that regulates which genes turn on and turn off.
- So when stem cells don't receive enough vitamin C, the epigenome can become damaged in a way that increases stem cell function.
- But also increases the risk of leukemia.
- This increased risk is partly tied to how ascorbate affects an enzyme known as Tet2.
- Mutations that inactivate Tet2 are an early step in the formation of leukemia.
- Ascorbate depletion can limit Tet2 function in tissues in a way that increases the risk of leukemia, the researchers explained.
- Importantly, the findings have implications for older patients with a common precancerous condition known as clonal hematopoiesis.
- It puts patients at a higher risk of developing leukemia and other diseases.
According to experts:
- One of the most common mutations in patients with clonal hematopoiesis is a loss of one copy of Tet2.
- Our results suggest patients with clonal hematopoiesis and a Tet2 mutation.
- In addition, should be particularly careful to get 100 per cent of their daily Vitamin C requirement.
- Because these patients only have one good copy of Tet2 left,
- They need to maximise the residual Tet2 tumour-suppressor activity to protect themselves from cancer.