Institutional members access full text with Ovid®

Share this article on:

The impact of vitamin D deficiency on diabetes and cardiovascular risk

Baz-Hecht, Merava,b; Goldfine, Allison Ba,b

Current Opinion in Endocrinology, Diabetes and Obesity: April 2010 - Volume 17 - Issue 2 - p 113–119
doi: 10.1097/MED.0b013e3283372859
Diabetes and the endocrine pancreas I: Edited by Aldo Rossini

Purpose of review To review the association between vitamin D deficiency and diabetes and cardiovascular risk.

Recent findings Vitamin D deficiency is newly recognized as a common condition of increasing prevalence worldwide. Clinically, vitamin D has an established role in calcium and bone metabolism and has recently been shown to be associated with increased risk of developing type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus and cardiovascular disease (CVD), as well as with cardiovascular risk factors such as hypertension and obesity. The molecular mechanisms of these associations remain incompletely understood. The active metabolite of vitamin D regulates transcription of multiple gene products with antiproliferative, prodifferentiative, and immunomodulatory effects. Although vitamin D deficiency is frequently unrecognized clinically, laboratory measurement is easy to perform and treatment of vitamin D deficiency is relatively well tolerated and inexpensive. Limited, yet promising, results of proof-of-concept intervention studies of using vitamin D in diabetes will be presented.

Summary The high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency and plausible molecular mechanisms linking this to diabetes and cardiovascular risk suggest treatment of vitamin D deficiency to prevent and/or treat diabetes is a promising field to explore.

aHarvard Medical School, USA

bJoslin Diabetes Center, One Joslin Place, Boston, Massachusetts, USA

Correspondence to Allison B. Goldfine, MD, Joslin Diabetes Center, One Joslin Place, Boston, MA 02215, USA Tel: +1 617 732 2643; fax: +1 617 713 3403; e-mail:

© 2010 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.