Asthma: Edited by Nicola A. HananiaVitamin D and asthmaMak, Garbo; Hanania, Nicola AAuthor Information Section of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, USA Correspondence to Nicola A. Hanania, MD, MS, Section of Pulmonary, Critical Care and Sleep Medicine, Baylor College of Medicine, 1504 Taub Loop, Houston, TX 77030, USA Tel: +1 713 873 3454; fax: +1 713 873 3346; e-mail: [email protected] Current Opinion in Pulmonary Medicine: January 2011 - Volume 17 - Issue 1 - p 1-5 doi: 10.1097/MCP.0b013e3283411440 Buy Metrics Abstract Purpose of review Asthma is a disease that continues to carry a significant health burden on humanity. Vitamin D is thought to play a role in many chronic diseases as it may possess immunomodulatory properties. This article will review the role of vitamin D regulation on the immune system and its potential implication in the pathophysiology of asthma. Recent findings Vitamin D receptors are present on many cells in the body, specifically peripheral blood mononuclear cells. Vitamin D has been shown to regulate the balance of several pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory responses in the immune system. Studies have suggested that prenatal vitamin D intake has an effect on childhood wheezing and asthma. Additionally, vitamin D may play a role in asthma exacerbations, and recent evidence also suggests its importance in steroid resistant asthma. Summary Vitamin D has a complex role on the immune system and its regulation of various aspects of immunity has allowed speculation on its potential role in asthma. However, the net effect of vitamin D on the immune system and its role in asthma still remains unanswered. More research needs to address the diagnostic and therapeutic implications vitamin D may have in the future of asthma management. © 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.