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Home  > Oral Herpes > Vitamin C benefits against herpes

Vitamin C benefits against herpes

Vitamin C has been shown to have antiviral activity against herpes virus.

J Clin Microbiol 1986 Oct;24(4):527-31:

In vitro effect of ascorbic acid on infectivity of herpesviruses and paramyxoviruses.

White LA, Freeman CY, Forrester BD, Chappell WA.

"Suspensions of herpes simplex virus types 1 and 2, cytomegalovirus, and parainfluenzavirus type 2 were inactivated within 24 h when treated at 37 degrees C with 1 mg (5.05 mM) of copper-catalyzed sodium ascorbate per ml. The infectivity titer of respiratory syncytial virus was reduced substantially after 24 h but required 48 h for inactivation. Under these conditions, inactivation of these viruses was also successfully achieved with 5.68 mM catalyzed ascorbic acid. Copper (Cu2+), when added with the ascorbate solution at 5 micrograms/ml (0.022 mM), exhibited a catalytic effect on the inactivation of these viruses. The rate of inactivation was affected by the incubation temperature, time of exposure, and the virus concentration. Ascorbate concentrations as high as 10 mg/ml (50.5 mM) demonstrated only a minimum increase in effect on viral inactivation. The loss of infectivity did not alter either the hemagglutination or complement fixation qualities of the antigens."

Antiviral Res 1995 Jun;27(3):263-70:

Topical treatment of recurrent mucocutaneous herpes with ascorbic acid-containing solution.

Hovi T, Hirvimies A, Stenvik M, Vuola E, Pippuri R. Enterovirus Laboratory, National Public Health Institute, Helsinki, Finland.

"We carried out a randomized double-bind, placebo-controlled clinical trial on the topical treatment of recurrent mucocutaneous herpes with a strong water solution of Ascoxal, an ascorbic acid-containing pharmaceutical formulation with mucolytic and non-specific antimicrobial activities. The lesion was firmly pressed with a cotton wool pad soaked in drug solution 3 times for 2 min with 30-min intervals on the first day only. Evaluation of the effects was by daily recordings of several different symptoms, including the presence and severity of erythema, induration, papulae or vesicles and scab by both the patient and a trained nurse, and by virus culture. Fourteen episodes with active treatment and 18 with the placebo were analyzed. According to the patients' records, the active treatment resulted in a significantly smaller cumulative number of days with scab (P < 0.01), or with any remaining symptom (P < 0.02) and significantly fewer occasions of worsening of any symptom after the treatment (P < 0.05). According to the nurse's records, the persistence of scabs was significantly shorter in the active treatment group (means 3.4 vs 5.9 days, P = 0.03). Virus culture after the first day of treatment yielded herpes simplex virus significantly less frequently in the active treatment group than in the placebo group (P < 0.01).

In conclusion, a brief treatment with this ascorbic acid-containing preparation resulted in statistically significant clinical and antiviral effects, which calls for further and more extensive studies with a more intensive treatment schedule."

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