Higher serum 25(OH)D concentrations are associated with improved FEV 1 and FVC in adolescence

Eur Respir J. 2017 Apr 26;49(4):1601804. doi: 10.1183/13993003.01804-2016. Print 2017 Apr.


Vitamin D plays a role in the development of the immune system and the lung, as well as in airway remodelling. Therefore, this study investigated the association between serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentrations and spirometric lung function parameters at age 15 years.In the German birth cohorts GINIplus and LISAplus, lung function testing by spirometry and 25(OH)D measurements were performed during the 15-year follow-up examinations. Valid lung function measurements pre- and/or post-bronchodilation and serum 25(OH)D concentrations, which were adjusted for the date of blood sampling to account for seasonal variability, were available for 2607 adolescents. Associations between 25(OH)D concentrations and spirometric parameters were analysed using generalised additive models adjusted for confounding factors.Serum 25(OH)D concentrations were significantly associated with forced vital capacity (FVC), forced expiratory volume in 1 s (FEV1) and FEV1/FVC measured before bronchodilation after adjustment for potential confounders: FEV1 increased by 10 mL (95% CI 2-17), FVC by 20 mL (95% CI 12-28) and FEV1/FVC decreased by 0.177% (95% CI -0.286 to -0.067) per 10 nmol·L-1 increase in 25(OH)D concentrations. Flow rates (forced expiratory flow rates at 25, 50 and 75% of exhaled FVC (FEF25, FEF50, FEF75) and mean flow rate between 25 and 75% of FVC (FEF25-75)) were not associated with vitamin D. Similar associations were observed for lung function parameters measured after bronchodilation.Vitamin D concentrations are positively associated with volume-related lung function parameters pre- and post-bronchodilation, suggesting structural changes in peripheral airways.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Forced Expiratory Flow Rates
  • Forced Expiratory Volume
  • Germany
  • Humans
  • Lung / physiology*
  • Male
  • Regression Analysis
  • Spirometry
  • Tidal Volume
  • Vitamin D / analogs & derivatives*
  • Vitamin D / blood


  • Vitamin D
  • 25-hydroxyvitamin D