Effects of vitamin D supplementation on red cell indices and cytokines in patients with thalassemia: An open-label randomized clinical trial
Background and aim
Deficiency of vitamin D is known as a health problem all over the world and a recognized clinical complication of beta thalassemia patients. Vitamin D acts as a hormone at the nuclear receptor rendering it a beneficial medication for a number of diseases. It is believed that vitamin D
is important in the modulation of the inflammation system by regulating the formation of inflammatory cytokines and immune cells. This study aimed to investigate the effect of vitamin D supplementation on the red cell indices and cytokines levels in patients with beta thalassemia major, in an open label randomized clinical trial.
Patients and Methods: this study performed an open-label randomized clinical trial in patients with beta thalassemia major. Forty-six patients completed the eight weeks clinical trial and were allocated to administer oral vitamin D3 supplement of 100,000 IU every two weeks as an add-on treatment. During the study, hematological indices, serum iron, ferritin, vitamin D, calcium and inflammatory markers (interleukin-6, interleukin-2 and interleukin-10) were evaluated before (at baseline) and after vitamin D supplementation for 8 weeks.
Results: Vitamin D3 supplements significantly decreases interleukin-6 levels and elevates the serum levels of anti-inflammatory cytokines IL-2 and IL-10, it also significantly reduced serum ferritin level, but it did not alter the hematological indices.
Our results suggest that administration of vitamin D has a potential anti-inflammatory role in beta thalassemia patients and reduces serum ferritin levels, which may reduce the burdens of iron overload in thalassemia patients.