Jagetia, G. C., Rajanikant, G. K. and Rao, S. K. Evaluation of the Effect of Ascorbic Acid Treatment on Wound Healing in Mice Exposed to Different Doses of Fractionated Gamma Radiation. Radiat. Res. 159, 371–380 (2003).
Alteration of the radiation-induced changes in wound contraction, collagen synthesis and wound histology by ascorbic acid was studied in mice exposed to 10, 16 and 20 Gy of fractionated (2 Gy/fraction) γ radiation. The animals were given double-distilled water or ascorbic acid daily before exposure to 2 Gy/day of fractionated irradiation. A full-thickness skin wound was created on the dorsum of the irradiated mice, and the progression of wound contraction and collagen synthesis were examined and histological evaluations were carried out at various times after wounding. Irradiation caused a dose-dependent delay in wound contraction, and pretreatment with ascorbic acid resulted in a significant increase in wound contraction. The greatest increase in wound contraction was observed 6 and 9 days after wounding in both groups. Pretreatment with ascorbic acid augmented the synthesis of collagen significantly as revealed by an increase in hydroxyproline content. The collagen deposition and fibroblast and vasculature densities declined in a dose-dependent manner in groups receiving radiation alone as indicated by histological evaluation. Pretreatment with ascorbic acid ameliorated the observed effect significantly. These studies demonstrate that pretreatment with ascorbic acid resulted in a significant reduction of radiation-induced delay in wound healing as shown by earlier wound closure and increased collagen content and fibroblast and vascular densities.