Many have heard of the Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling. After winning the prize in chemistry in 1954, he went off on this tangent and decided to be the major proponent of vitamin C for health.
Lots of people became pretty excited, and decided to see if Vitamin C did anything to cancer cells in the lab. In test tube studies, they found it sure did, see for yourself. Melanoma cells, leukemia cells, neuroblastoma cells, carcinoma cells, fibrosarcoma cells…you get the idea. Sure enough, it seemed Linus was on to something.
And Vitamin C did not kill these nasties by being an antioxidant. No. It actually had pro-oxidant effects, and increased the free radicals within the cancer cells to make them die. See the blog on ozone for more about oxidation.
Anyway, among Mr. Pauling’s ideas was to take massive oral doses to get high blood levels so the vitamin C would do what it did in a test tube. Unfortunately for Linus, there was a flaw in his thinking.
You don’t get good blood levels of Vitamin C when you take it by mouth, and neither does your dog. Turns out the body keeps the Vitamin C in a low range when given as a tablet. And the range is too low.
Two published clinical trials found that vitamin C did not do anything for cancer patients. Things did not look good for Linus.
But it turns out that there is hope. There are ways to use the cancer-killing effect of vitamin C for dogs with cancer. And it turns out that these ways might really work. Stay tuned for more!!
Best to all,
Dr. Demian Dressler is internationally recognized as “the dog cancer vet” because of his innovations in the field of dog cancer management, and the popularity of his blog here at Dog Cancer Blog. The owner of South Shore Veterinary Care, a full-service veterinary hospital in Maui, Hawaii, Dr. Dressler studied Animal Physiology and received a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of California at Davis before earning his Doctorate in Veterinary Medicine from Cornell University. After practicing at Killewald Animal Hospital in Amherst, New York, he returned to his home state, Hawaii, to practice at the East Honolulu Pet Hospital before heading home to Maui to open his own hospital. Dr. Dressler consults both dog lovers and veterinary professionals, and is sought after as a speaker on topics ranging from the links between lifestyle choices and disease, nutrition and cancer, and animal ethics. His television appearances include “Ask the Vet” segments on local news programs. He is the author of The Dog Cancer Survival Guide: Full Spectrum Treatments to Optimize Your Dog’s Life Quality and Longevity. He is a member of the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Hawaii Veterinary Medical Association, the American Association of Avian Veterinarians, the National Animal Supplement Council and CORE (Comparative Orthopedic Research Evaluation). He is also an advisory board member for Pacific Primate Sanctuary.