Vitamin C reversed malfunction of peripheral blood-derived mononuclear cells in smokers through antioxidant properties

Circ J. 2008 Apr;72(4):654-9. doi: 10.1253/circj.72.654.


Background: Smoking impairs neovascularization, possibly, through the impaired function of peripheral blood-derived mononuclear cells (PB-MNCs). Thus, the mechanism of impaired function of PB-MNCs caused by chronic smoking was examined, and whether vitamin C reversed the malfunction of PB-MNCs in smokers was investigated.

Methods and results: The cohort comprised 27 healthy male volunteers (16 smokers and 11 age-matched non-smokers). For evaluation of the colony-forming activity of PB-MNCs, the number of endothelial colony-forming units (e-CFUs) was counted in a culture assay. Migration activity of PB-MNCs was evaluated by the modified Boyden chamber method. In smokers, the number of e-CFUs was reduced to 56% and migratory activity of PB-MNCs to 40% compared with non-smokers (p<0.01). The urinary level of 8-isoprostane, an oxidative stress marker, was greater in smokers than in non-smokers (p<0.05). There was an inverse correlation between migratory activity of PB-MNCs but not between the number of e-CFUs and urinary level of 8-isoprostane. Furthermore, oral administration of vitamin C for 2 weeks ameliorated the impaired migratory activity of PB-MNCs in smokers.

Conclusion: Chronic smoking impairs the function of PB-MNCs. Smoking-induced oxidative stress may be involved in impaired migratory activity of PB-MNCs.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Antioxidants / pharmacology*
  • Ascorbic Acid / pharmacology*
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Cell Movement / drug effects
  • Cohort Studies
  • Colony-Forming Units Assay
  • Cytokines / blood
  • Dinoprost / analogs & derivatives
  • Dinoprost / urine
  • Endothelial Cells / drug effects
  • Endothelial Cells / pathology
  • Endothelial Cells / physiology
  • Humans
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / drug effects*
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / metabolism*
  • Leukocytes, Mononuclear / pathology
  • Male
  • Oxidative Stress
  • Smoking / blood*
  • Smoking / drug therapy*
  • Smoking / pathology
  • Smoking / urine
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / blood
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A / pharmacology


  • Antioxidants
  • Cytokines
  • VEGFA protein, human
  • Vascular Endothelial Growth Factor A
  • 8-epi-prostaglandin F2alpha
  • Dinoprost
  • Ascorbic Acid