Tuberculosis bacterium extraordinarily sensitive to vitamin C

Mycobacterium tuberculosis is extraordinarily sensitive to killing by a vitamin C-induced Fenton reaction

Drugs that kill tuberculosis more quickly could shorten chemotherapy significantly. In Escherichia coli, a common mechanism of cell death by bactericidal antibiotics involves the generation of highly reactive hydroxyl radicals via the Fenton reaction. Here we show that vitamin C, a compound known to drive the Fenton reaction, sterilizes cultures of drug-susceptible and drug-resistant Mycobacterium tuberculosis, the causative agent of tuberculosis. While M. tuberculosis is highly susceptible to killing by vitamin C, other Gram-positive and Gram-negative pathogens are not. The bactericidal activity of vitamin C against M. tuberculosis is dependent on high ferrous ion levels and reactive oxygen species production, and causes a pleiotropic effect affecting several biological processes. This study enlightens the possible benefits of adding vitamin C to an anti-tuberculosis regimen and suggests that the development of drugs that generate high oxidative burst could be of great use in tuberculosis treatment.

This is the kind of thing I would want to know if I had a TB diagnosis. Undoubtedly hardly any doctors know this and most will remain ignorant. So one must find out on one’s own.

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2 comments
Vladimir Heiskanen (Valtsu) says March 27, 2014

Hello from Finland!

I’ve been following your blogs for maybe 1-2 years now, and now I it just came to my mind that you might also enjoy some of the health stuff I’ve been writing… I have some interesting articles on thyroid, glycine, near-infrared light etc!

http://valtsus.blogspot.com/

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Mangan says March 27, 2014

Thanks, Valtsu, I’ll check out your blog.

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