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The role of Vitamin D in complications from pneumonia

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  • The role of Vitamin D in complications from pneumonia

    By LizW - Vitamin D has been in the news often lately, as researchers tease out its relationship to Type 1 diabetes, cancer, rheumatoid arthritis and some autoimmune diseases. Now it appears that Vitamin D may have played a role in the virulence of the 1918 flu epidemic. A study published in the peer-reviewed journal “Dermato-Endocrinology” explores why pneumonia, as a complication of the flu, struck many fewer people in southern US cities than those farther north. The authors of the article found an association between UVB irradiance and case-fatality rate (CFR) in the twelve regions studied by the United States Public Health Service in 1919. Vitamin D is made in the body when oils in the skin interact with UVB radiation from the sun (and some newer types of tanning beds).

    The authors noted that “The lowest case-fatality rates occurred in the area with the highest solar UVB irradiance and lowest latitude, San Antonio TX, while the highest rates were in New London CT, which had the lowest UVB irradiance and highest latitude. The lowest rates of pneumonia as a complication of influenza were in Spartanburg SC and San Antonio, the two areas at the lowest latitudes.”

    While this study cannot predict how Vitamin D levels will affect case-fatality rates in the current A/H1N1v pandemic, additional research could help determine its role in the incidence of bacterial pneumonia as a complicating factor of influenza.

    Links for further reading: (Abstract at Medical News Today) ( discussion) (Full article at LandesBioscience - requires free registration)

    Suggested headlines:
    The role of Vitamin D in A/H1N1v
    How Vitamin D may lessen pneumonia in A/H1N1v flu

    Editor - S. Sanders

  • #2
    At least one elected official gets it

    pages 186-187 in Gov Mike Huckabee's latest book "Do the Right Thing" highlight the potential for a major impact from getting Americans on vitamin D.

    It's nice to see an elected official paying such close attention to actual science.


    • #3
      Re: The role of Vitamin D in complications from pneumonia


      It looks like your wish of last June has been fulfilled. I presume you've found the new long threads on Vitamin D.

      welcome back.

      "The next major advancement in the health of American people will be determined by what the individual is willing to do for himself"-- John Knowles, Former President of the Rockefeller Foundation