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Vitamin D in health and disease : an insight into traditional functions and new roles for the 'sunshine vitamin'

Borradale, David & Kimlin, Michael G. (2009) Vitamin D in health and disease : an insight into traditional functions and new roles for the 'sunshine vitamin'. Nutrition Research Reviews, 22(2), pp. 118-136.

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Abstract

Vitamin D is unique among the vitamins in that humans can synthesize it via the action of UV radiation upon the skin. This combined with its ability to act on specific target tissues via Vitamin D Receptor’s (VDR) make its classification as a steroid hormone more appropriate. While Vitamin D deficiency is a recognized problem in some northern latitude countries, recent studies have shown even in sunny countries such as Australia, vitamin D deficiency may be more prevalent than first thought. Vitamin D is most well known for its role in bone health, however, the discovery of VDR’s on a wide variety of tissue types has also opened up roles for vitamin D far beyond traditional bone health. These include possible associations with autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis and inflammatory bowel diseases, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and muscle strength. Firstly, this paper presents an overview of the two sources of vitamin D: exposure to ultraviolet-B radiation and food sources of vitamin D, with particular focus on both Australian and international studies on dietary vitamin D intake and national fortification strategies. Secondly, the paper reviews recent epidemiological and experimental evidence linking vitamin D and its role in health and disease for the major conditions linked to suboptimal vitamin D, while identifying significant gaps in the research and possible future directions for research.

Impact and interest:

30 citations in Scopus
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23 citations in Web of Science®

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ID Code: 30087
Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Vitamin D, UV Radiation, Bone Health, Cancer Prevention
DOI: 10.1017/S0954422409990102
ISSN: 0954-4224
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > CLINICAL SCIENCES (110300) > Geriatrics and Gerontology (110308)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES (111700) > Epidemiology (111706)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > MEDICAL AND HEALTH SCIENCES (110000) > NUTRITION AND DIETETICS (111100) > Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified (111199)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Current > Schools > School of Public Health & Social Work
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2009 Cambridge University Press
Deposited On: 01 Feb 2010 11:01
Last Modified: 01 Mar 2012 00:05

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