Calcitriol plays a protective role in diabetic nephropathy through anti-inflammatory effects

Int J Clin Exp Med. 2014 Dec 15;7(12):5437-44. eCollection 2014.


Aims: To ascertain the protective role of calcitriol in the development of diabetic nephropathy and unravel the mechanism of the protective effects.

Methods: In this prospective study, 69 patients were screened for type 1 diabetes, and 31 patients with type 1 diabetes were enrolled. Among these 31 patients, 24 patients had insufficient or deficient levels of serum vitamin D and 21 patients complied with calcitriol and were followed up. At baseline, these 21 patients who suffered from vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency displayed elevated inflammation markers and urinary albumin excretion in contrast with patients with sufficient vitamin D. Simultaneously, serum 25(OH)D3 level was negatively associated with serum and urinary inflammation markers, such as TNF-α, IL-6, and ICAM-1. Six months later, even though glycol-metabolism was not alleviated, all the serum and urinary inflammation markers decreased significantly. Meanwhile, proteinuria declined with inflammation markers.

Results: Calcitriol supplementation alleviated inflammation and proteinuria in patients with type 1 diabetes.

Conclusions: Calcitriol might delay the development of diabetic nephropathy through suppressing inflammation.

Keywords: Vitamin D; diabetic nephropathy; inflammation.