Research Article: Vitamin D supplementation lowers thrombospondin-1 levels and blood pressure in healthy adults

Date Published: May 10, 2017

Publisher: Public Library of Science

Author(s): Anjalee T. Amarasekera, Bahador Assadi-Khansari, Saifei Liu, Marilyn Black, Greer Dymmott, Natasha M. Rogers, Aaron L. Sverdlov, John D. Horowitz, Doan T. M. Ngo, David D. Roberts.


Vitamin D insufficiency, defined as 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) levels < 75nmol/L is associated with cardio-metabolic dysfunction. Vitamin D insufficiency is associated with inflammation and fibrosis, but it remains uncertain whether these anomalies are readily reversible. Therefore, we aimed to determine the effects of vitamin D supplementation on markers of: 1) nitric oxide (NO) signaling, 2) inflammation, and 3) fibrosis, in healthy volunteers with mild hypovitaminosis. Healthy volunteers (n = 35) (mean age: 45 ± 11 years) with 25(OH)D levels <75nmol/L, received vitamin D supplementation (Ostelin ® capsules 2000IU) for 12 weeks. Resting systolic and diastolic blood pressures (BP) were assessed. Routine biochemistry was examined. Plasma concentrations of asymmetric dimethylarginine (ADMA), thrombospondin-1 (TSP-1), plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 (PAI-1), hs-CRP, activin-A, and follistatin-like 3 (FSTL3) were quantitated. Vitamin D administration for 12 weeks significantly increased 25-(OH)D levels (48.8 ± 16 nmol/L to 100.8 ± 23.7 nmol/L, p<0.001). There was significant lowering of systolic and diastolic BP, while there was no significant change in lipid profiles, or fasting insulin. Plasma concentrations of ADMA, hs-CRP, PAI-1, activin A, and FSTL-3 did not change with vitamin D supplementation. However, there was a marked reduction of TSP-1 (522.7 ± 379.8 ng/mL vs 206.7 ± 204.5 ng/mL, p<0.001). Vitamin D supplementation in vitamin D insufficient, but otherwise healthy individuals markedly decreased TSP-1 levels and blood pressure. Since TSP-1 suppresses signaling of NO, it is possible that the fall in BP is engendered by restoration of NO effect.

Partial Text

Vitamin D deficiency (25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) < 50nmol/L) or insufficiency (25(OH)D <75nmol/L, is present in approximately 30% to 50% of the general population, and is suggested to contribute to the pathogenesis of numerous diseases [1]. Similarly, the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data suggested the occurrence of vitamin D deficiency in the United States to be 25% to 57% of adults [2]. This study establishes that adequate vitamin D supplementation (i) markedly decreases TSP-1 concentrations, while it has no effect on ADMA concentrations; ii) lowers blood pressure with a significant correlation between the increase in 25(OH)D levels with supplementation and fall in blood pressure.   Source:


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