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Minerva Pneumologica 2019 September;58(3):85-90

DOI: 10.23736/S0026-4954.19.01855-8


language: English

The effect of vitamin D supplement in asthmatic children: implication of interferon gamma

Soha F. ELATREBI 1 , Aida A. GUEMEI 1, Yasmine A. ISSA 2, Seham Z. NASSAR 3, Mohamed ABOUGABAL 4, Nabil M. ELBAHIE 1

1 Department of Clinical Pharmacology, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt; 2 Department of Medical Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt; 3 Department of Medical Physiology, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt; 4 Department of Pediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, Alexandria University, Alexandria, Egypt

BACKGROUND: Vitamin D (VitD) plays an important immunoregulatory role in bronchial asthma (BA). Interferon gamma (IFN-γ) is implicated in BA and affected by VitD but its relationship to the response of asthmatic children to VitD is unclear. The aim of this study was to investigate the benefit of VitD supplement in childhood asthma in Egyptian population.
METHODS: It is a non-randomized control study. Ninety-five asthmatic children were recruited and followed up for 1 year after adding a daily oral dose of 600 IU of VitD to their main treatment (inhaled corticosteroids). Pulmonary function tests (PFTs), serum levels of VitD and IFN-γ were assessed at the beginning of the study and after 3 months. PFTs were also reassessed after one year. During the study, patients’ asthma control level was assessed every month using a survey adapted from the Global Initiative for Asthma.
RESULTS: All patients had initially low VitD mean serum level, which was significantly increased after VitD supplements (P<0.001). IFN-γ serum level significantly decreased (P=0.004). The children performed significantly better in the PFTs after 3 months and one year (P<0.001). Upon dividing the population into responders (Rs) and non-responders, the Rs performed significantly better only in the forced expiratory volume in 1 second/forced vital capacity test after 3 months.
CONCLUSIONS: This study proves that VitD add-on improves the level of asthma control and the PFTs in Egyptian asthmatic children. However, the response of patients to treatment was not affected by the significant decrease of IFN-γ serum level.

KEY WORDS: Asthma; Child; Vitamin D; Interferon-gamma; Pulmonary function tests

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