Influence of multiple UV exposures on serum cobalamin and vitamin D levels in healthy females

Scand J Public Health. 2015 May;43(3):324-30. doi: 10.1177/1403494815572206. Epub 2015 Mar 4.


Aims: Ultraviolet (UV) radiation is a major source for vitamin D production. Furthermore, UV destroys cobalamins (also called vitamin B12) in solution. However, data from humans are scarce. The aim of the present study was to clarify if UV exposure has any effect on serum cobalamins, as compared to vitamin D levels, in healthy volunteers.

Methods: This single-center, open observational study was conducted in a research institute: 23 non-pregnant, non-lactating, healthy, fair-skinned female subjects had their serum cobalamin and 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D, the marker for vitamin D status) levels measured before and after exposure to UV.

Results: UV exposure increased serum 25(OH)D levels from 61.6 nmol/L to 88.5 nmol/L (44%; p < 0.001). A statistically insignificant decay in serum cobalamin levels from 300 pmol/L to 260 pmol/L (13%; p = 0.142) was observed in the volunteers after the first UV exposure; however, no additional decline of statistical significance was seen after subsequent exposures.

Conclusions: Multiple exposure to UV radiation give a significant increase in 25(OH)D levels, but has no detrimental effect on cobalamin concentrations.

Keywords: Cobalamin; ultraviolet radiation; vitamin B12; vitamin D; women.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Environmental Exposure*
  • Female
  • Healthy Volunteers / statistics & numerical data
  • Humans
  • Ultraviolet Rays*
  • Vitamin B 12 / blood*
  • Vitamin D / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin D / blood


  • Vitamin D
  • 25-hydroxyvitamin D
  • Vitamin B 12