Vitamin D endocrine system and the genetic susceptibility to diabetes, obesity and vascular disease. A review of evidence

Diabetes Metab. 2005 Sep;31(4 Pt 1):318-25. doi: 10.1016/s1262-3636(07)70200-8.


The Vitamin D endocrine system regulates multiple aspects of calcium metabolism and cellular differentiation and replication in the immune system, endocrine pancreas, liver, skeletal muscles and adipocytes. It plays an important role in glucose homeostasis, notably, in the mechanism of insulin release. Actions of vitamin D are mediated by the binding of 1, 25-(OH)2D3 to a specific cytosolic/nuclear vitamin D receptor (VDR), a member of the steroid/thyroid hormone receptor superfamily. Several frequent polymorphisms are found in the VDR gene and were reported to be associated with a variety of physiological and pathological phenotypes in many populations. In this paper, we will review the evidences suggesting associations of allelic variations in the VDR gene and phenotypes related to body weight, glucose homeostasis, diabetes and its vascular complications.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Diabetes Mellitus / genetics*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / genetics
  • Endocrine System / physiology*
  • Genetic Predisposition to Disease*
  • Genetic Variation
  • Humans
  • Obesity / genetics*
  • Receptors, Calcitriol / genetics*
  • Restriction Mapping
  • Vascular Diseases / genetics*
  • Vitamin D / physiology*


  • Receptors, Calcitriol
  • Vitamin D