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Latitude, sunlight, vitamin D, and childhood food allergy/anaphylaxis.

Authors
  • Mullins, Raymond James1
  • Camargo, Carlos A
  • 1 Medical School, Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia. [email protected] , (Australia)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Current Allergy and Asthma Reports
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Feb 01, 2012
Volume
12
Issue
1
Pages
64–71
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s11882-011-0230-7
PMID: 22006065
Source
Medline
License
Unknown

Abstract

Vitamin D is widely known for its role in bone metabolism, but this sterol hormone also has important immunomodulatory properties. Vitamin D is produced by the conversion of D3 in the skin following UVB exposure, or after ingestion of D2 or D3. At the extremes of latitude, there is insufficient UVB intensity in the autumn and winter months for adequate synthesis of vitamin D to occur. Growing evidence implicates vitamin D deficiency in early life in the pathogenesis of nonskeletal disorders (e. g., type 1 diabetes and multiple sclerosis) and, more recently, atopic disorders. Several studies have reported higher rates of food allergy/anaphylaxis or proxy measures at higher absolute latitudes. Although causality remains to be determined, these studies suggest a possible role for sunlight and/or vitamin D in the pathogenesis of food allergy/anaphylaxis.

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