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How Obesity Affects Vitamin D Metabolism

A new Journal of Bone and Mineral Research study confirms that vitamin D supplementation is less effective in the presence of obesity, and it uncovers a biological mechanism to explain this observation.

Thursday, February 21, 2019 12:01 am EST
"Low circulating levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D are common in obesity and have been attributed to sequestration of vitamin D in fat cells. Here we propose a second mechanism with greater biological implications: obesity reduces the ability of the liver to convert vitamin D into 25-hydroxyvitamin D"

A new Journal of Bone and Mineral Research study confirms that vitamin D supplementation is less effective in the presence of obesity, and it uncovers a biological mechanism to explain this observation.

The study reveals that obese mice have very low levels of the enzyme in the liver that converts vitamin D into 25-hydroxyvitamin D (calcidiol), which is the major form of vitamin D in the blood. Therefore, it may be more effective to treat vitamin D insufficiency in obese individuals with calcidiol rather than with other forms of vitamin D.

“Low circulating levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D are common in obesity and have been attributed to sequestration of vitamin D in fat cells. Here we propose a second mechanism with greater biological implications: obesity reduces the ability of the liver to convert vitamin D into 25-hydroxyvitamin D,” said lead author Dr. Jeffrey Roizen, of The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia. “Our observations show that this early step in activating vitamin D is influenced by obesity, and suggest that obesity-related effects on the liver can have clinically important systemic effects on bone and mineral metabolism. Further, while we often think of low vitamin D causing obesity, this work shows that an illness or pathology (like obesity) can cause low vitamin D.” 

Additional Information

Link to Study: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/jbmr.3686 

About Journal 

The Journal of Bone and Mineral Research (JBMR) publishes highly impactful original manuscripts, reviews, and special articles on basic, translational and clinical investigations relevant to the musculoskeletal system and mineral metabolism. Specifically, the journal is interested in original research on the biology and physiology of skeletal tissues, interdisciplinary research spanning the musculoskeletal and other systems, including but not limited to immunology, hematology, energy metabolism, cancer biology, and neurology, and systems biology topics using large scale “-omics” approaches. The journal welcomes clinical research on the pathophysiology, treatment and prevention of osteoporosis and fractures, as well as sarcopenia, disorders of bone and mineral metabolism, and rare or genetically determined bone diseases. 

About Wiley

Wiley is a global leader in research and education. Our online scientific, technical, medical, and scholarly journals, and our digital learning, assessment, certification and student-lifecycle services and solutions help universities, academic societies, businesses, governments and individuals to achieve their academic and professional goals. For more than 200 years, we have delivered consistent performance to our stakeholders. The Company's website can be accessed at www.wiley.com.

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