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Vitamin D may affect the severity of HCV-related liver disease

The latest issue of the Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics examines the association between serological and dietary vitamin D levels and hepatitis C-related liver disease risk differs in African American and white males.

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Dr White and colleagues examined the association between serum vitamin D levels and advanced liver disease in a multiethnic US cohort of HCV patients, and account for dietary and supplemental intake.

The research team measured serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels, and used FibroSURE-ActiTest to assess hepatic pathology in a cohort of HCV-infected male veterans.

The research team estimated and adjusted for daily intake of vitamin D from diet using a Dietary History Questionnaire, and dispensed prescriptions prior to study enrolment.

The team used race-stratified logistic regression analyses to evaluate the relationship between serum vitamin D levels, and risk of advanced fibrosis, and advanced inflammation.

African Americans with insufficient levels had more than 2-fold excess risk of advanced inflammation
Alimentary Pharmacology & Therapeutics

A total of 163 African American, and 126 White non-Hispanics were studied.

The team found that about 44% of African Americans, and 15% of Whites were vitamin D deficient or insufficient.

The team observed that 4% of African Americans, and 9% of White patients had an elevated level.

Among African Americans, patients with elevated serum vitamin D levels had significantly higher odds of advanced fibrosis than those with normal levels.

In contrast, the team noted that African Americans with insufficient or deficient levels had more than 2-fold excess risk of advanced inflammation.

Among White males there was no association between vitamin D levels and advanced fibrosis or inflammation risk.

Dr White's team concludes, "We observed potential differences in the association between vitamin D levels, and degree of HCV-related hepatic fibrosis between White and African American males."

"Additional research is necessary to confirm that high serum vitamin D levels may be associated with advanced fibrosis risk in African American males, and to evaluate whether racial differences exist in HCV-infected females."

Aliment Pharmacol Ther 2013: 38(1): 28–37
17 June 2013

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