Primary and secondary effects of ascorbate on procollagen synthesis and protein synthesis by primary cultures of tendon fibroblasts. Academic Article uri icon


  • The effects of ascorbic acid on collagen biosynthesis were studied in primary cultures of fibroblasts from chick embryo tendons. Addition of ascorbate to the cultures increased the rate of synthesis of procollagen hydroxyproline, but the effect was not explained by activation of prolyl hydroxylase as has been seen in other cell cultures. Instead the increase in the rate of hydroxyproline synthesis appeared to be the result of some direct cofactor effect of the vitamin. In the presence of ascorbate, most of the newly synthesized procollagen was hydroxylated and became triple helical. In the absence of ascorbate, the overall degree of hydroxylation in newly synthesized procollagen was reduced, but a small fraction of newly synthesized procollagen was near-maximally hydroxylated and became triple helical. When cultures were exposed to ascorbic acid for more than 6 h, there was an increase in rate of protein synthesis, rate of procollagen synthesis, and fraction of membrane-bound ribosomes. The increases in these parameters in the presence of ascorbate appeared to be a secondary effect produced by the accumulation of stable triple-helical procollagen in the culture system. © 1976.

published proceedings

  • Arch Biochem Biophys

author list (cited authors)

  • Kao, W. W., Flaks, J. G., & Prockop, D. J

citation count

  • 36

complete list of authors

  • Kao, WW||Flaks, JG||Prockop, DJ

publication date

  • April 1976