Vitamin D deficiency contributes to a multitude of health conditions, but its biological mechanisms are not adequately understood. Untargeted metabolomics offers the opportunity to comprehensively examine the metabolic profile associated with variations in vitamin D concentrations. The objective of the current analysis was to identify metabolites and metabolic pathways associated with plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] concentrations. The current study included children of pregnant women in the Vitamin D Antenatal Asthma Reduction Trial, who had 25(OH)D and global metabolomics data at age 1 and 3 years. We assessed the cross-sectional associations between individual metabolites and 25(OH)D using linear regression adjusting for confounding factors. Twelve metabolites were significantly associated with plasma 25(OH)D concentrations at both age 1 and 3 after correction for multiple comparisons, including three members of the n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acid (PUFA) metabolism pathway (linoleate, arachidonate, and docosapentaenoate) inversely associated with 25(OH)D. These PUFAs along with four other significant metabolites were replicated in the independent Childhood Asthma Management Program (CAMP) cohort. Both vitamin D and n-6 PUFAs are involved in inflammatory processes, and evidence from cell and animal studies demonstrate a plausible biological mechanism where the active form of 25(OH)D may influence n-6 PUFA metabolism. These relationships warrant further investigation in other populations.
Keywords: 25-hydroxyvitamin D; Vitamin D Antenatal Asthma Reduction Trial (VDAART); metabolomic epidemiology; n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids; polyunsaturated fatty acids; vitamin D.
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- R01HL123915, R01HL141826, K01HL146980-01, R01HL091528R21HL0898425T32HL007427-34P01HL132825/HL/NHLBI NIH HHS/United States
- R01AR049880/AR/NIAMS NIH HHS/United States
- W81XWH-17-1-0533/U.S. Department of Defense
- UG3OD023268/NIH Office of the Director
- U01HG008685/HG/NHGRI NIH HHS/United States