Association between vitamin D status in early pregnancy and atopy in offspring in a vitamin D deplete cohort
Vitamin D status may play a role in the development of atopic diseases due to its action on lung development and immune system development and function.
Our objective was to assess whether 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) levels in maternal blood in pregnancy were associated with atopy in children.
We analysed 279 mother-child pairs from the ROLO study conducted in Dublin, Ireland. Serum 25OHD was measured at 13 and 28 weeks of pregnancy. Development of childhood atopy was self-reported by mothers at follow-up appointments at 6 months, 2 years or 5 years. Logistic regression analysis was used to evaluate associations between maternal 25OHD status and development of atopy.
The mean (SD) 25OHD levels in early and late pregnancy were 41.9 (19.2) nmol/L and 40.2 (21.6) nmol/L, respectively. Maternal 25OHD status in early pregnancy, but not in late pregnancy, was associated with a reduced risk of atopy at 2 years (OR 0.972, CI 0.946–0.999). In early pregnancy, those with serum 25OHD levels < 30 nmol/L compared with those with 25OHD > 50 nmol/L had significantly greater risk of developing atopy at 2 years (OR 4.76, CI 1.38–16.47).
The development of childhood atopy may be associated with maternal vitamin D deficiency in early pregnancy among a cohort of women at risk of vitamin D deficiency. Further research is required to explore the relationship between vitamin D and atopy, particularly among women with poor vitamin D status, and whether supplementation should be prioritised in early pregnancy to reduce childhood atopy.
KeywordsAtopic disease Childhood Longitudinal study Pregnancy ROLO Vitamin D
This study was supported by the Health Research Board Ireland and the Health Research Centre for Health and Diet Research.
This study was financially supported by the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013), project EarlyNutrition under grant agreement no. 289346
Compliance with ethical standards
The study was conducted according to the guidelines laid down in the Declaration of Helsinki with institutional ethics approval from the National Maternity Hospital, Ireland, and informed, written maternal consent.
Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
- 1.Global Asthma Network (2014) The global asthma report. Auckland, New ZealandGoogle Scholar
- 2.Asher MI, Montefort S, Björkstén B, Lai CKW, Strachan DP, Weiland SK, Williams H (2006) Worldwide time trends in the prevalence of symptoms of asthma, allergic rhinoconjunctivitis, and eczema in childhood: ISAAC phases one and three repeat multicountry cross-sectional surveys. Lancet (London, England) 368(9537):733–743. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(06)69283-0 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- 6.Palmer DJ, Sullivan TR, Skeaff CM, Smithers LG, Makrides M, DOMInO Allergy Follow-up Team (2015) Higher cord blood 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations reduce the risk of early childhood eczema: in children with a family history of allergic disease. World Allergy Organ J 8(1):28. https://doi.org/10.1186/s40413-015-0077-9 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 7.Rothers J, Wright AL, Stern DA, Halonen M, Camargo CA (2011) Cord blood 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels are associated with aeroallergen sensitization in children from Tucson, Arizona. J Allergy Clin Immunol 128(5):1093–1099.e5. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaci.2011.07.015 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 11.Ross AC, Manson JE, Abrams SA, Aloia JF, Brannon PM, Clinton SK (2011) The 2011 report on dietary reference intakes for calcium and vitamin D from the Institute of Medicine: what clinicians need to know. J Clin Endocrinol Metab 96:53–58. https://doi.org/10.1210/jc.2010-2704 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 14.Kiely ME, Zhang JY, Kinsella M, Khashan AS, Kenny LC (2016) Vitamin D status is associated with uteroplacental dysfunction indicated by pre-eclampsia and small-for-gestational-age birth in a large prospective pregnancy cohort in Ireland with low vitamin D status. Am J Clin Nutr 104(2):354–361. https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.116.130419 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 15.Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition. Vitamin D and Health. London; 2016. https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/537616/SACN_Vitamin_D_and_Health_report.pdf. Accessed 2 Sept 2016
- 17.Food Safety Authority of Ireland (2011) Scientific recommendations for a National Infant Feeding Policy, 2nd ednGoogle Scholar
- 20.Harrington J, Perry I, Lutomski J et al (2008) SLÁN 2007: Survey of lifestyle, Attitudes and nutrition in Ireland. Dietary habits of the Irish population. Psychol Rep:6 http://epubs.rcsi.ie/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1005&context=psycholrep
- 25.Litonjua AA, Carey VJ, Laranjo N, Harshfield BJ, McElrath TF, O’Connor GT, Sandel M, Iverson RE Jr, Lee-Paritz A, Strunk RC, Bacharier LB, Macones GA, Zeiger RS, Schatz M, Hollis BW, Hornsby E, Hawrylowicz C, Wu AC, Weiss ST (2016) Effect of prenatal supplementation with vitamin D on asthma or recurrent wheezing in offspring by age 3 years: the VDAART randomized clinical trial. Jama. 315(4):362–370. https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2015.18589 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 26.Litonjua AA, Carey VJ, Laranjo N, Harshfield BJ, McElrath TF, O’Connor GT, Sandel M, Iverson RE Jr, Lee-Paritz A, Strunk RC, Bacharier LB, Macones GA, Zeiger RS, Schatz M, Hollis BW, Hornsby E, Hawrylowicz C, Wu AC, Weiss ST (2016) Effect of prenatal supplementation with vitamin D on asthma or recurrent wheezing in offspring by age 3 years. JAMA. 315(4):362. https://doi.org/10.1001/jama.2015.18589 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 31.Morales E, Romieu I, Guerra S, Ballester F, Rebagliato M, Vioque J, Tardón A, Rodriguez Delhi C, Arranz L, Torrent M, Espada M, Basterrechea M, Sunyer J, INMA Project (2012) Maternal vitamin D status in pregnancy and risk of lower respiratory tract infections, wheezing, and asthma in offspring. Epidemiology. 23(1):64–71. https://doi.org/10.1097/EDE.0b013e31823a44d3 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 32.Onwuneme C, Martin F, McCarthy R, Carroll A, Segurado R, Murphy J, Twomey A, Murphy N, Kilbane M, McKenna M, Molloy E (2015) The association of vitamin D status with acute respiratory morbidity in preterm infants. J Pediatr 166(5):1175–1180.e1. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jpeds.2015.01.055 CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
- 33.Pike KC, Inskip HM, Robinson S, Lucas JS, Cooper C, Harvey NC, Godfrey KM, Roberts G, the Southampton Women's Survey Study Group (2012) Maternal late-pregnancy serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D in relation to childhood wheeze and atopic outcomes. Thorax. 67(11):950–956. https://doi.org/10.1136/thoraxjnl-2012-201888 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- 34.Goldring ST, Griffiths CJ, Martineau AR, Robinson S, Yu C, Poulton S, Kirkby JC, Stocks J, Hooper R, Shaheen SO, Warner JO, Boyle RJ (2013) Prenatal vitamin D supplementation and child respiratory health: a randomised controlled trial. Fehrenbach H, ed. PLoS One 8(6):e66627. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0066627 CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar