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Peter BergmanVitamin D and human immunity - experimental and clinical studies

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Clinical Microbiology, Virology, Karolinska University Hospital,
Huddinge, Stockholm
Webpage at Karolinska University Hospital

Vitamin D regulates calcium balance and bone health. In addition, it has a key role in adaptive and innate immunity. Low serum-levels of vitamin D is associated with an increased risk of respiratory tract infections.

We hypothesized that vitamin D supplementation could reduce the frequency and severity of respiratory tract infections (RTIs). To test this hypothesis we performed a randomised and placebo-controlled trial where 4000 IU vitamin D3 or placebo was given to patients for one year.

The main result was that patients given vitamin D exhibited a reduced infectious burden related to RTIs and a lower antibiotic consumption compared with the placebo-group. Interestingly, in vitro experiments have shown that another compound, phenylbutyrate (PBA), is able to potentiate the effects of vitamin D.

Thus, the combination of Vitamin D and PBA could potentially have even better clinical effects than vitamin D alone. My current research focus is to study the mechanisms involved in Vitamin D/PBA mediated effects on immunity and to perform additional clinical trials.

footer all slides 2014-02-06


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