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  1. Berdanier, Carolyn D. PhD


Vitamin C or ascorbic acid is a required nutrient for humans. Should this vitamin be lacking in the human diet, the disease, scurvy, will develop. Scurvy has been described since ancient times, and its cure through the provision of ascorbic acid has had a torturous path. Vitamin C is an important contributor to the overall regulation of the redox state of the body due to its easy interconversion from an oxidized form to a reduced form and vice versa. It is important for collagen synthesis and serves as an essential coenzyme to a wide variety of enzymes. Not all animals require dietary intakes of the vitamin, but humans, some primates, guinea pigs, fruit bats, and some fish species do. The recommended daily intakes for this nutrient are well established.