Vitamin C

  • Li-Da Du
  • Xiang-Ying Kong
  • Guan-Hua DuEmail author


Vitamin C is a general term for compounds having ascorbic acid activity, including ascorbic acid, dehydroascorbic acid, and its isomers. A few hundred years ago, researchers found that scurvy could be prevented by eating green vegetables or fruits and obtained the crystal from different plants and identified it as ascorbic acid vitamin C. Vitamin C is considered as a classical enzyme cofactor or antioxidant but also as a transition material in metal ion reaction. And all of these functions of vitamin C are related to the property of oxidation reduction. Vitamin C plays an important role in maintaining human health, such as electron transfer, antioxidant effect, co-substrate function of enzyme, antihistamine effect, and immunomodulatory effects. Therefore, vitamin C not only exerts good healthcare function but also produces therapeutic effect, which emerges with wide prospects in the clinic.


Vitamin C Ascorbic acid Antioxidant 


  1. 1.
    Zhang DS, Du GH, translation. The vitamins fundamental aspects in nutrition and health. Beijing: Science Press, 2009.Google Scholar

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© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. and People's Medical Publishing House, PR of China 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Biomedical SciencesChinese University of Hong KongHong KongChina
  2. 2.Institute of Chinese Materia Medica, China Academy of Chinese Medical SciencesBeijingChina
  3. 3.Beijing Key Laboratory of Drug Targets Identification and Drug ScreeningCentre for Pharmaceutical Screening, Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences and Peking Union Medical CollegeBeijingChina

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