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Feb 13, 2014

Vitamin D Levels Linked to Multiple Sclerosis Progression

New research links Vitamin D to the progression of Multiple sclerosis (MS), a chronic disorder that affects the brain and spinal cord.  MS is a condition in which the immune system attacks components of the body as if they are foreign. Previous studies have found multiple sclerosis rates to be lower in areas with greater sunlight and higher consumption of vitamin D rich fish.
In a recent study, the vitamin D levels of MS patients involved in an assessment of early interferon beta-1b treatment were evaluated. Vitamin D levels were taken before the beginning of the study and then after six, twelve, and twenty-four months. Various outcome measures, including MS relapses and disability were analyzed.
It was found that MS progressed more slowly in participants with higher vitamin D blood levels, and increases in vitamin D levels by 50 nmol/L was linked to a 57 percent  reduced risk of developing new active brain lesions as well as 57 percent  lower risk of relapse.  Furthermore, higher vitamin D levels were associated with 0.41 percent less yearly brain volume loss and a 25 percent reduced yearly increase in T2 lesion volume.