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Schizophrenia associated with low vitamin D – review Dec 2014

Schizophrenia: implications of vitamin D deficit on brain development

Ana Dias Amaral ana.s.d.amaral at gmail.com, Conceigao Calhau2,3, and Rui Coelho1,4
1 Psychiatry and Mental Health Clinic, Centro Hospitalar de Sao Joao, Porto, Portugal
2 Department of Biochemistry, Medical Investigation Centre, Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal
3 CINTESIS - Center for Research in Health Technologies and Information Systems, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal
4 Department of Clinical Neurosciences and Mental Health, Faculty of Medicine, University of Porto, Porto, Portugal

Image Image

Figure 3.
Green boxes refer to schizophrenia
Orange boxes refer to VD deficiency.
Orange /Green boxes refer to pathways altered in both conditions.
Blue boxes refer to neurobiological measures mentioned along the text.

Background: Schizophrenia is one of the most disabling psychiatric disorders, with serious consequences on families and society. Although a genetic component in its aetiology is indisputable, environmental factors also play an important role. Vitamin D (VD) has been implicated in central nervous system development and some evidence points to its role on schizophrenia aetiology. We aim to summarize brain alterations occurring in schizophrenia and how VD is relevant to them.

Methods: Literature review up to 30th September 2014, using MeSH terms schizophrenia, vitamin D, brain, and central nervous system.

Results: We summarize alterations occurring at anatomical and histological levels.
Moreover, we describe biological pathways in which VD is involved that are proven to be disrupted in schizophrenia:

  • neurotrophic factors,
  • neurotransmission,
  • synaptic and cytoskeleton anomalies,
  • calcium homeostasis,
  • energy metabolism and redox balance.

Finally, we give some emphasis to cognitive disturbances.

Conclusions: The heterogeneity of some studies does not allow to definitely affirm that VD deficit plays a role on schizophrenia aetiology. Studies on different populations and animal models should be conducted in order to achieve reproducible results. Therefore, this paper should be regarded as a guide to the pathways and anatomical structures disrupted by VD deficit in schizophrenia, and warrant further investigation. Although we cannot definitely affirm that VD deficiency is essential for schizophrenia aetiology, literature currently points to this hypothesis.
 Download the PDF from VitaminDWiki.

See also VitaminDWiki

Many reasons to think that schizophrenia is associated with low vitamin D
1) 97% of patients with schizophrenia are vitamin D deficient
2) Schizophrenia varies with latitude (UVB) by 10X (controversy)
3) Schizophrenia is more common in those with dark skin (when away from the equator)
4) Schizophrenia is associated with low natal vitamin D
5) Schizophrenia has been increasing around the world when vitamin D has been decreasing (controversy)
6) Schizophrenia is associated with low birth rate, which is associated with low vitamin D
7) Schizophrenia is associated with Autism which is associated with low vitamin D
8) Schizophrenia Bulletin Editorial (Jan 2014) speculated that Vitamin D could be a major player
9) Schizophrenia 2X more likely if low vitamin D - meta-analysis
10) Schizophrenia increased 40 % for Spring births after Danes stopped vitamin D fortification
11) Schizophrenia is associated with season of birth
12) Schizophrenia is associated with poor Vitamin D Receptor genes
13) Schizophrenia risk is decreased if give Vitamin D after birth
14) Schizophrenia symptoms reduced when Vitamin D levels are restored

Attached files

ID Name Comment Uploaded Size Downloads
4765 Schiz and vit D Fig 3.jpg admin 27 Dec, 2014 14:36 132.45 Kb 1982
4764 Schizophrenia risk factors and Vit D.jpg admin 27 Dec, 2014 14:36 86.99 Kb 2225
4763 Schizphrenia Dec 2014.pdf PDF 2014 admin 27 Dec, 2014 14:36 457.60 Kb 767
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