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Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1982 Dec;79(23):7532-6.

Effects of intake of L-ascorbic acid on the incidence of dermal neoplasms induced in mice by ultraviolet light.


We have carried out a study of large malignant skin tumors (squamous cell carcinomas) and other lesions in hairless mice (groups of 38-45) intermittently exposed to ultraviolet light over a period of 15 weeks, beginning when the mice were about 10 weeks old. The several groups were given a standard diet with 0%, 0.3%, 5%, and 10% added L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) throughout the study. No lesions developed in unirradiated control groups. The lesions were counted every 14 days for 4 months, beginning 4 weeks before the end of the period of irradiation. The observed incidence of lesions of several sizes during successive time periods was analyzed by the statistical method recommended by a committee of the International Agency for Research on Cancer. A pronounced effect of vitamin C in decreasing the incidence and delaying the onset of the malignant lesions was observed with high statistical significance.

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