Vitamin D resistance in magnesium deficiency

Am J Clin Nutr. 1976 Aug;29(8):854-8. doi: 10.1093/ajcn/29.8.854.


Four patients with gastrointestinal disorders, and one patient with chronic alcoholism presented with both hypocalcemia and hypomagnesemia. Pharmacological doses of either ergocalciferol or dihydrotachysterol did not correct the hypocalcemia except in one patient who had a minimal rise in serum calcium. Parathormone levels were high in three patients and exogenous parathormone given to the fourth subject failed to elicit a rise in serum calcium, implying impairment of the calcemic response to parathormone. Magnesium repletion simultaneously corrected the hypomagnesemia and hypocalcemia. Balance data suggested that the rise in serum calcium was in part, at least, due to increased mobilization of minerals from bone. While the mechanism remains speculative, it appears that magnesium facilitates the release of calcium from bone in the presence of adequate amounts of vitamin D and parathormone.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Alcoholism / complications
  • Bone and Bones / metabolism
  • Calcium / metabolism
  • Dihydrotachysterol / therapeutic use
  • Drug Resistance
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / complications
  • Humans
  • Hypocalcemia / complications
  • Hypocalcemia / drug therapy*
  • Magnesium / metabolism
  • Magnesium / therapeutic use
  • Magnesium Deficiency / complications
  • Magnesium Deficiency / drug therapy
  • Magnesium Deficiency / metabolism*
  • Middle Aged
  • Parathyroid Hormone / physiology
  • Parathyroid Hormone / therapeutic use
  • Phosphorus / blood
  • Vitamin D / physiology
  • Vitamin D / therapeutic use*


  • Parathyroid Hormone
  • Vitamin D
  • Phosphorus
  • Magnesium
  • Dihydrotachysterol
  • Calcium