The skin of severely scorbutic guinea pigs which were losing weight contained no detectible neutral salt-extractible collagen.
Conditions of growth (weight gain) which actively induced the formation of neutral salt-extractible collagen in the skin of normal guinea pigs failed to do so in the animal with ascorbic acid deficiency.
No excess of non-collagenous proline was found in neutral salt extracts of scorbutic skin as compared with normal.
Fractionation of these extracts failed to reveal the presence of significant amounts of a soluble component containing unusual proportions of glycine and proline relative to hydroxyproline.
It is concluded that deficiency of ascorbic acid either interferes with the synthesis of new collagen in intact skin or causes its destruction and removal as rapidly as it is produced.