Study examines relationship between vitamin D and chronic inflammation
New genetic research has found a direct link between low levels of vitamin D and high levels of inflammation.
The study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology was conducted by investigators at the University of South Australia. Scientists sought to evaluate the causality and relationship between vitamin D status and C-reactive protein levels using linear and non-linear Mendelian randomization (MR) analyses.
Examining genetic data from 294,970 participants of white, British ancestry from the UK Biobank, researchers found a one-way relationship between low levels of vitamin D and high levels of C-reactive protein, expressed as inflammation. The findings suggest that boosting vitamin D in people with a deficiency may reduce chronic inflammation.
“High levels of C-reactive protein are generated by the liver in response to inflammation, so when your body is experiencing chronic inflammation, it also shows higher levels of C-reactive protein,” said Ang Zhou, PhD, lead researcher on the study and research associate at UniSA Clinical & Health Sciences in a statement. “This study examined vitamin D and C-reactive proteins and found a one-way relationship between low levels of vitamin D and high levels of C-reactive protein, expressed as inflammation. “Boosting vitamin D in people with deficiencies may reduce chronic inflammation, helping them avoid a number of related diseases.”
According to the authors, the study also suggests that having adequate vitamin D concentrations may mitigate complications arising from obesity and reduce the risk or severity of chronic illnesses with an inflammatory component, such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and autoimmune diseases.