There is a strong advocacy movement for large doses of vitamin C. Some authors argue that the biological half-life for vitamin C at high plasma levels is about 30 minutes, but these reports are the subject of some controversy. NIH researchers established the current RDA based upon tests conducted 12 hours (24 half lives) after consumption. The dynamic flow model refutes the current low-dose recommendations for dietary intakes and links Pauling's mega-dose suggestions with other reported effects of massive doses of ascorbate for the treatment of disease. Although, a couple of controlled clinical studies conducted at The Mayo Clinic did not support a significant benefit for terminal cancer patients after 10 grams of once-a-day oral vitamin C, other clinical trials have demonstrated that ascorbate may indeed be effective against tumors when administered intravenously. Recent studies confirmed that plasma vitamin C concentrations vary substantially with the route of administration. Only by intravenous administration, the necessary ascorbate levels to kill cancer cells are reached in both plasma and urine. Because the efficacy of vitamin C treatment cannot be judged from clinical trials that use only oral dosing, the role of vitamin C in cancer treatment should be reevaluated. One limitation of current studies is that pharmacokinetic data at high intravenous doses of vitamin C are sparse, particularly in cancer patients. This fact needs prompt attention to understand the significance of intravenous vitamin C administration. This review describes the current state-of-the-art in oral and intravenous vitamin C pharmacokinetics. In addition, the governmental recommendations of dose and frequency of vitamin C intake will also be addressed.
Since 1989, eight new antiepileptic drugs (AEDs) have been licensed for clinical use. Levetiracetam is the latest to be licensed and is used as adjunctive therapy for the treatment of adult patients with partial seizures with or without secondary generalisation that are refractory to other established first-line AEDs. Pharmacokinetic studies of levetiracetam have been conducted in healthy volunteers, in adults, children and elderly patients with epilepsy, and in patients with renal and hepatic impairment. After oral ingestion, levetiracetam is rapidly absorbed, with peak concentration occurring after hours, and its bioavailability is >95%. Co-ingestion of food slows the rate but not the extent of absorption. Levetiracetam is not bound to plasma proteins and has a volume of distribution of - L/kg. Plasma concentrations increase in proportion to dose over the clinically relevant dose range (500-5000 mg) and there is no evidence of accumulation during multiple administration. Steady-state blood concentrations are achieved within 24-48 hours. The elimination half-life in adult volunteers, adults with epilepsy, children with epilepsy and elderly volunteers is 6-8, 6-8, 5-7 and 10-11 hours, respectively. Approximately 34% of a levetiracetam dose is metabolised and 66% is excreted in urine unmetabolised; however, the metabolism is not hepatic but occurs primarily in blood by hydrolysis. Autoinduction is not a feature. As clearance is renal in nature it is directly dependent on creatinine clearance. Consequently, dosage adjustments are necessary for patients with moderate to severe renal impairment. To date, no clinically relevant pharmacokinetic interactions between AEDs and levetiracetam have been identified. Similarly, levetiracetam does not interact with digoxin, warfarin and the low-dose contraceptive pill; however, adverse pharmacodynamic interactions with carbamazepine and topiramate have been demonstrated. Overall, the pharmacokinetic characteristics of levetiracetam are highly favourable and make its clinical use simple and straightforward.