Vitamin D, a neuro-immunomodulator: Implications for neurodegenerative and autoimmune diseases

Fernandes de Abreu, D. A., Eyles, D. and Feron, F. (2009) Vitamin D, a neuro-immunomodulator: Implications for neurodegenerative and autoimmune diseases. Psychoneuroendocrinology, 34 1: S265-S277. doi:10.1016/j.psyneuen.2009.05.023

Author Fernandes de Abreu, D. A.
Eyles, D.
Feron, F.
Title Vitamin D, a neuro-immunomodulator: Implications for neurodegenerative and autoimmune diseases
Journal name Psychoneuroendocrinology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0306-4530
Publication date 2009-07-09
Year available 2009
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2009.05.023
Volume 34
Issue 1
Start page S265
End page S277
Total pages 13
Place of publication Oxford, United Kingdom
Publisher Pergamon
Collection year 2010
Language eng
Subject C1
321204 Mental Health
730211 Mental health
Abstract It has been known for more than 20 years that vitamin D exerts marked effects on immune and neural cells. These non-classical actions of vitamin D have recently gained a renewed attention since it has been shown that diminished levels of vitamin D induce immune-mediated symptoms in animal models of autoimmune diseases and is a risk factor for various brain diseases. For example, it has been demonstrated that vitamin D (i) modulates the production of several neurotrophins, (ii) up-regulates Interleukin-4 and (iii) inhibits the differentiation and survival of dendritic cells, resulting in impaired allo-reactive T cell activation. Not surprisingly, vitamin D has been found to be a strong candidate risk-modifying factor for Multiple Sclerosis (MS), the most prevalent neurological and inflammatory disease in the young adult population. Vitamin D is a seco-steroid hormone, produced photochemically in the animal epidermis. The action of ultraviolet light (UVB) on 7-dehydrocholesterol results in the production of pre-vitamin D which, after thermo-conversion and two separate hydroxylations, gives rise to the active 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin D. Vitamin D acts through two types of receptors: (i) the vitamin D receptor (VDR), a member of the steroid/thyroid hormone superfamily of transcription factors, and (ii) the MARRS (membrane associated, rapid response steroid binding) receptor, also known as Erp57/Grp58. In this article, we review some of the mechanisms that may underlie the role of vitamin D in various brain diseases. We then assess how vitamin D imbalance may lay the foundation for a range of adult disorders, including brain pathologies (Parkinson's disease, epilepsy, depression) and immune-mediated disorders (rheumatoid arthritis, type I diabetes mellitus, systemic lupus erythematosus or inflammatory bowel diseases). Multidisciplinary scientific collaborations are now required to fully appreciate the complex role of vitamin D in mammal metabolism.
Keyword Vitamin D
Steroid hormone
Nervous system
Immune system
Multiple sclerosis
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: 2010 Higher Education Research Data Collection
Queensland Brain Institute Publications
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Created: Tue, 20 Apr 2010, 12:29:28 EST by Debra McMurtrie on behalf of Queensland Brain Institute