Christopher D. Lascola1, Talaignair Venkatraman1, Bjorn Engstrom1, Haichen Wang1
1Department of Radiology and Brain
: L-ascorbic acid (vitamin C) is the most abundant intracellular antioxidant and an essential co-factor. Intracellular levels of ascorbic acid (AA) are remarkably high, where concentrations may exceed 10-30 mM. In this study, we show that AA in solution produces significant changes in T2 and T2* relaxivity at physiologically relevant concentrations. These results raise two important possibilities: first, that endogenous AA may be an important contributor to native T2 and T2* contrast in CNS and other tissues; and second, that both oxidized and reduced forms of ascorbic acid may have utility as novel MR contrast probes.