Navigation Links
Vitamin D deficiency linked with airway changes in children with severe asthma

Children with severe therapy-resistant asthma (STRA) may have poorer lung function and worse symptoms compared to children with moderate asthma, due to lower levels of vitamin D in their blood, according to researchers in London. Lower levels of vitamin D may cause structural changes in the airway muscles of children with STRA, making breathing more difficult. The study provides important new evidence for possible treatments for the condition.

The findings were published online ahead of the print edition of the American Thoracic Society's American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine.

"This study clearly demonstrates that low levels of vitamin D are associated with poorer lung function, increased use of medication, worse symptoms and an increase in the mass of airway smooth muscle in children with STRA," said Atul Gupta, MRCPCH, M.D., a researcher from Royal Brompton Hospital and the National Heart and Lung Institute (NHLI) at Imperial College and King's College London. "It is therefore plausible that the link between airway smooth muscle mass and lung function in severe asthma may be partly explained by low levels of vitamin D."

While most children with asthma can be successfully treated with low doses of corticosteroids, about 5 to 10 percent of asthmatic children do not respond to standard treatment. These children have severe therapy-resistant asthma, or STRA, experience more asthma episodes and asthma-related illnesses, and require more healthcare services, than their treatment-receptive peers.

Although previous studies of children with asthma have linked increases in airway smooth muscle mass with poorer lung function and in vitro studies have established a connection between levels of vitamin D and the proliferation of airway smooth muscle, this is the first study to evaluate the relationship between vitamin D and the pathophysiology of children with STRA.

"Little is known about vitamin D status and its effect on asthma pathophysiology in these patients," Dr. Gupta noted. "For our study, we hypothesized that children with STRA would have lower levels of vitamin D than moderate asthmatics, and that lower levels of vitamin D would be associated with worse lung function and changes in the airway muscle tissue."

The researchers enrolled 86 children in the study, including 36 children with STRA, 26 with moderate asthma and 24 non-asthmatic controls, and measured the relationships between vitamin D levels and lung function, medication usage and symptom exacerbations.The researchers also examined tissue samples from the airways of the STRA group to evaluate structural changes in the airway's smooth muscle.

At the conclusion of the study the researchers found children with STRA had significantly lower levels of vitamin D, as well as greater numbers of exacerbations, increased use of asthma medications and poorer lung function compared to children with moderate asthma and non-asthmatic children. Airway muscle tissue mass was also increased in the STRA group.

"The results of this study suggest that lower levels of vitamin D in children with STRA contribute to an increase in airway smooth muscle mass, which could make breathing more difficult and cause a worsening of asthma symptoms," Dr. Gupta said.

The findings suggest new treatment strategies for children suffering from difficult-to-treat asthma, he added.

"Our results suggest that detecting vitamin D deficiency in children with STRA, and then treating that deficiency, may help prevent or reduce the structural changes that occur in the airway smooth muscle, which in turn may help reduce asthma-related symptoms and improve overall lung function," Dr. Gupta said.

Before any widespread treatment recommendations can be made, however, larger studies will

"The determination of the exact mechanism between low vitamin D and airway changes that occur in STRA will require intervention studies," Dr. Gupta said. "Hopefully, the results of this and future studies will help determine a new course of therapy that will be effective in treating these children."


Contact: Brian Kell
American Thoracic Society

Related medicine news :

1. African-American men living in poor sunlight areas at risk for vitamin D deficiency
2. One size doesnt fit all for vitamin D and men
3. Confirmation that vitamin D acts as a protective agent against the advance of colon cancer
4. Vitamin D Levels Linked to Certain Skin Cancers, Study Finds
5. Gazpacho ingredients lose vitamin C during preparation
6. Smokers Mistakenly Believe Vitamins Protect Them From Cancer
7. Licence to smoke: Taking vitamin pills may undermine motivation to reduce smoking
8. Vitamin D relieves joint, muscle pain for breast cancer patients
9. Psoriatic Arthritis Patients Seem to Lack Enough Vitamin D
10. Vitamin D lower in NFL football players who suffered muscled injuries, study reports
11. Vitamin D, Calcium Combo May Halve Melanoma Risk in Some Women
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... As ... Water For Empowerment ™ attracts volunteers together who want to combine talents and ... as key stakeholders in the process. The non-profit launched its first major fundraiser ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Dr. John Pierce, Medical Director at the Ageless ... treatment with the Capillus272™ Pro laser therapy cap. FDA cleared for safety and efficacy, ... without the need for surgery, prescription pills, or topical foams. , “Capillus272™ Pro ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... November 25, 2015 , ... Lakeview Health, a Jacksonville-based drug ... their sobriety and show through pictures what a positive difference it makes. The ... with the hashtag #FacesOfGratitude on their Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram accounts. Short ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... ... On November 23rd 2015 Cozy Products, a division of Bird-X ... Products explains what this means for business moving forward. , The Tri Lite heater ... model: to sell personal heaters that reduce energy consumption, are economical and keep people ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... ... 2015 , ... In an ongoing Clinical Study conducted by an independent physician, ... Angel is evaluating the efficacy of its product and its disinfection protocol. This study ... from May 2014 through October 2015 at a 360-bed, acute-care, academic medical center located ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/25/2015)... , Nov. 25, 2015  Today AVACEN Medical announced the issue of United ... Energy Including Blood Viscosity Adjustment ". This patent shields the company,s AVACEN 100 dry heat therapy ... Method. Photo - ... ... ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... Endo International plc (NASDAQ: ENDP ) (TSX: ENL) today ... will discuss corporate updates at the 27 th Annual ... on Wednesday, December 2, 2015 at 1 p.m. ET. ... then the link to the event. Participants should allow approximately ... the site and download any streaming media software needed to ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... NEW YORK , November 25, 2015 ... global market of self-monitoring blood glucose devices was valued ... to grow with a CAGR of 5.7% during 2015 ... increasing geriatric population and increasing prevalence of diabetes. In ... about diabetes care is also contributing to the growth ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: