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General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

Low Vitamin D Levels Linked to Longevity, Surprising Study Shows

The correlation between vitamin D levels and longevity seems to be at least partially genetic.
Lowering levels of Vitamin D (as staying away from tanning beds) in itself does not necessarily lead to longer lives.
However, the authors believe further study is needed.

From the 5 November 2012 article at Science Daily

 Low levels of vitamin D may be associated with longevity, according to a study involving middle-aged children of people in their 90s published in CMAJ(Canadian Medical Association Journal).

We found that familial longevity was associated with lower levels of vitamin D and a lower frequency of allelic variation in the CYP2R1 gene, which was associated with higher levels of vitamin D,” writes Dr. Diana van Heemst, Department of Gerontology and Geriatrics, Leiden University Medical Center, Leiden, the Netherlands, with coauthors.

Previous studies have shown that low levels of vitamin D are associated with increased rates of death, heart disease, diabetes, cancer, allergies, mental illness and other afflictions. However, it is not known whether low levels are the cause of these diseases or if they are a consequence…

Full text of the article is at http://www.cmaj.ca/content/early/2012/11/05/cmaj.120233.full.pdf+html

Abstract

Background: Low levels of 25(OH) vitamin D are associated with various age-related diseases and mortality, but causality has not been determined. We investigated vitamin D levels in the offspring of nonagenarians who had at least one nonagenarian sibling; these offspring have a lower prevalence of age-related diseases and a higher propensity to reach old age compared with their partners.

Methods: We assessed anthropometric characteristics, 25(OH) vitamin D levels, parathyroid hormone levels, dietary vitamin D intake and single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) associated with vitamin D levels. We included offspring (n = 1038) of nonagenarians who had at least one nonagenarian sibling, and the offsprings’ partners (n = 461; controls) from the Leiden Longevity Study. We included age, sex, body mass index, month during which blood sampling was performed, dietary and supplemental vitamin D intake, and creatinine levels as possible confounding factors.

Results: The offspring had significantly lower levels of vitamin D (64.3 nmol/L) compared with controls (68.4 nmol/L; p = 0.002), independent of possible confounding factors. There was no difference in the levels of parathyroid hormone between groups. Compared with controls, the offspring had a lower frequency of a genetic variant in theCYP2R1 gene (rs2060793) (p = 0.04). The difference in vitamin D levels between offspring and controls persisted over the 2 most prevalent genotypes of this SNP.

Interpretation: Compared with controls, the offspring of nonagenarians who had at least one nonagenarian sibling had a reduced frequency of a common variant in theCYP2R1 gene, which predisposes people to high vitamin D levels; they also had lower levels of vitamin D that persisted over the 2 most prevalent genotypes. These results cast doubt on the causal nature of previously reported associations between low levels of vitamin D and age-related diseases and mortality.

 

 

Background: Low lev

 

November 8, 2012 - Posted by | Nutrition | , , ,

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