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Food allergies and low vitamin D – thymus may be the connection – June 2016

Vitamin D deficiency in pregnancy may affect fetal thymus development.

Ginekol Pol. 2016;87(5):378-83.
Gur EB1, Gur MS, Ince O, Kasap E, Genc M, Tatar S, Bugday S, Turan GA, Guclu S.
1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Faculty of Medicine, Katip Celebi University, İzmir, Turkey. esrabaharg at yahoo.com.

VitaminDWiki summary: Less Vitamin D == Smaller thymus

Clipped from the PDF

  • “. . we did not investigate the association between fetal weight and fetal thymus measurements.”
  • Note: they excluded from the study “20 patients who were diagnosed pre-eclampsia, gestational diabetes, preterm labour or PPROM” – who typically have low vitamin D


  • "Within the thymus, T cells or T lymphocytes mature. T cells are critical to the adaptive immune system, where the body adapts specifically to foreign invaders."
  • "The thymus is largest and most active during the neonatal and pre-adolescent periods."
  • "Allergy results from an inappropriate and excessive immune response to common antigens. "

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 Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki

The aim of our study was to evaluate the association of vitamin D deficiency (VDD) during pregnancy with thymus size in full-term fetuses.

In this prospective study, we evaluated mid-pregnancy serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25(OH)D3) concentrations. The fetal thymus size was measured by ultrasound in the third trimester. Neonatal 25(OH)D3 levels were evaluated by umbilical cord blood sampling. Correlation of maternal and neonatal vitamin D levels and association between thymus size and both, maternal and neonatal vitamin D concentrations were investigated.

Serum 25(OH) D3 concentrations were within the normal range in 48 (29.8%) mothers and 10 (13.1%) new-borns. A strong correlation between mid-pregnancy maternal and neonatal 25(OH)D3 concentration (r = 0.8, p < 0.001) was found. A significant linear correlation was observed between both, maternal and neonatal 25(OH)D3 concentrations and thymus perimeter length (r = 0.45, p = 0.04 and r = 0.43, p < 0.01, respectively). Both, maternal and fetal VDDs were associated with decreased thymus perimeter (p = 0.04, p = 0.03).

Vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy may be associated with smaller fetal thymus. Our data suggest that VDD in pregnancy may lead to systemic inflammatory response in the fetus.

PMID: 27304655

Attached files

ID Name Comment Uploaded Size Downloads
6796 Thymus.jpg admin 17 Jun, 2016 12:43 5.84 Kb 1185
6795 Thymus perimeter.jpg admin 17 Jun, 2016 12:36 13.73 Kb 1170
6794 Thymus.pdf PDF 2016 admin 17 Jun, 2016 12:35 412.94 Kb 742