Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Vitamin D3 Provides Skin With Protection From Harmful Microbes

Date:
February 12, 2007
Source:
University of California - San Diego
Summary:
A study by researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine shows that fluctuations in vitamin D3 levels control the body's innate immune response, affecting a skin wound's ability to heal.

A study by researchers at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) School of Medicine shows that fluctuations in Vitamin D3 levels control the body's innate immune response, affecting a skin wound's ability to heal.

Richard L. Gallo, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine and chief of UCSD's Division of Dermatology and the Dermatology section of the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System, says that several unexpected associations between fluctuations of the body's vitamin D3 and infectious disease have emerged in recent investigations.

In a study appearing online February 8 in advance of publication in the March issue of the Journal of Clinical Investigation, Gallo and his colleagues look at how the innate immune system is controlled in the skin, and find that genes controlled by active vitamin D3 play an essential role in the process.

"Our study shows that skin wounds need vitamin D3 to protect against infection and begin the normal repair process," said Gallo. "A deficiency in active D3 may compromise the body's innate immune system which works to resist infection, making a patient more vulnerable to microbes."

Gallo's lab discovered that an antimicrobial peptide called cathelicidin is produced by wounds and is necessary to fight infections. Recently, several studies have begun to link vitamin D to cathelicidin. Researchers focused on white blood cells called macrophages that work to destroy invading bacterial microbes. Macrophages contain toll-like receptors that identify the invaders; when the receptors sense the presence of bacteria, they trigger cathelicidin production.

Gallo's team has now discovered that injury stimulates skin cells called keratinocytes, which surround the wound, to increase the production of vitamin D3 and that this in turn increases the expression of genes (CD14 and TLR2) that detect microbes. These genes, together with active vitamin D3, called 1,25D3, then lead to more cathelicidin. In both mice and humans, a deficiency in cathelicidin allows infections to develop more readily.

"Our finding -- that multiple, diverse genes controlled by 1,25D3 are increased after injury to the skin -- suggests that the availability of D3 is essential to the wound. These responses are a previously unrecognized part of the human injury response," said Gallo.

Lower concentrations of 1,25D3 in African Americans, likely due to a decreased ability to absorb vitamin D from sunlight, correlate with increased susceptibility to infection. In addition, 1,25D3 has been suggested to be an immune-modifying agent in pulmonary tuberculosis.

As a result of this and previous studies, Gallo and his colleagues are beginning clinical trials at UCSD Medical Center with both oral and topical vitamin D3. Normal volunteers, and patients with disorders in antimicrobial peptide production such as atopic dermatitis and acne, are being studied to determine if vitamin D3 can improve their natural immune defenses.

Additional contributors to the paper include Jόrgen Schauber, Robert A. Dorschner, Alvin B. Coda, Amanda S. Bόchau and David Kiken of UCSD's Division of Dermatology and VA San Diego Healthcare System; Philip T. Liu and Robert L. Modlin, Division of Dermatology, David Geffen School of Medicine, UCLA; Yolanda R. Helfrich and Sewon Kang Department of Dermatology, University of Michigan; Hashem Z. Alalieh and Daniel D. BIkle, Department of Medicine, VA Medical Center, UCSF; Andreas Steinmeyer and Ulrich Zόgel, Schering AG, Berlin, Germany

The research was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health and the Veterans Administration.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of California - San Diego. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of California - San Diego. "Vitamin D3 Provides Skin With Protection From Harmful Microbes." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 12 February 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070208230136.htm>.
University of California - San Diego. (2007, February 12). Vitamin D3 Provides Skin With Protection From Harmful Microbes. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070208230136.htm
University of California - San Diego. "Vitamin D3 Provides Skin With Protection From Harmful Microbes." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/02/070208230136.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

House Republicans Vote to Sue Obama Over Healthcare Law

Reuters - US Online Video (July 31, 2014) — The Republican-led House of Representatives votes to sue President Obama, accusing him of overstepping his executive authority in making changes to the Affordable Care Act. Mana Rabiee reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Despite Health Questions, E-Cigs Are Beneficial: Study

Newsy (July 31, 2014) — Citing 81 previous studies, new research out of London suggests the benefits of smoking e-cigarettes instead of regular ones outweighs the risks. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

Dangerous Bacteria Kills One in Florida

AP (July 31, 2014) — Sarasota County, Florida health officials have issued a warning against eating raw oysters and exposing open wounds to coastal and inland waters after a dangerous bacteria killed one person and made another sick. (July 31) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) — Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins