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Nutrition. 2011 Apr;27(4):471-8. doi: 10.1016/j.nut.2010.04.010. Epub 2010 Aug 13.

Time course of vitamin C distribution and absorption after oral administration in SMP30/GNL knockout mice.

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Department of Geriatrics and Vascular Medicine, Tokyo Medical and Dental University, Tokyo, Japan.



Because vitamin C (VC) has multiple metabolic and antioxidant functions, we investigated the movement of VC throughout the tissues of senescence marker protein-30 (SMP30)/gluconolactonase (GNL) knockout (KO) mice.


SMP30/GNL KO mice, which cannot synthesize VC in vivo, were divided into two groups: VC sufficient and VC deficient. Starting at 2 mo of age, both groups had free access to water containing 1.5 and 0.0375 g/L of VC for 1 mo.


The average rate of VC retention in 20 tissues of VC-deficient SMP30/GNL KO mice was only 13.7% of that in VC-sufficient mice. Tissues that retained over 20% of VC were the cerebellum, white fat, testes, eyeballs, and pancreas, and those with less than 5% VC were the kidneys and heart. These results clearly indicate the different VC retention capacities among tissues. Next, we examined the time course of VC distribution and absorption in VC-deficient SMP30/GNL KO mice. After oral VC administration, VC content in the liver and kidney peaked at 3 h and then decreased. VC content in the lungs, adrenal glands, skin, white fat, and pancreas peaked at 6 h and in the cerebellum, cerebrum, skeletal muscles, eyeballs, thyroid gland, and testes at 12 h.


In this study, we found that exogenous VC administered orally in VC-deficient SMP30/GNL KO mice was distributed at distinctly different rates within individual tissues. The SMP30/GNL KO mice used in this study are a useful animal model that provides unique opportunities for investigating VC movement and metabolism in the entire body.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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