Vitamin D deficiency in mature and preterm newborns

Vitamin D deficiency in mature and preterm newborns. – A Cohort and animal experimental study.

Ph.d. studerende, Cand.med. Sine Lykkedegn

Vitamin D insufficiency is widely common in the world. The prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency is not well described amongst newborns in Denmark. The concentration of Vitamin D in the foetus depends of the concentration in the mother, because Vitamin D passes the placental barrier. Vitamin D levels in the umbilical cord correlates with the maternal concentration just before delivery. The lack of vitamin D is associated to reduced placental development and weight, leading to a presumed risk for low birth weight and prematurity. The consequences of low Vitamin D in very preterm newborns are not well described.

Respiratory distress syndrome (RDS) is a lung disease seen in preterm newborns. RDS is due to the lack of surfactant, a lipoprotein complex that is to be found on the surface of the alveoli. The amount of surfactant in the lungs correlates with increasingly gestational age, why extreme preterm newborns often have a more difficult and rapid extending RDS. Several animal studies have shown that vitamin D in terms of Vitamin D has a positive impact on the foetal lung maturation and has the ability to influence the type II pneumocytes to increase the synthesis and secretion of surfactant lipids. A human study indicates that Vitamin D has a similar impact on the lungs in humans.

The aim is to illustrate the correlations and consequences between low Vitamin D in the pregnant mother and the newborn child, especially the preterm child. We will also establish a reference material for the calcium- and phosphate metabolism in the newborn with vitamin D in the normal range (50-80nmol/L). Through the animal