other Versions

Download PDFPDF

Vitamin D and SARS-CoV-2 virus/COVID-19 disease
Compose Response

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
Author Information
First or given name, e.g. 'Peter'.
Your last, or family, name, e.g. 'MacMoody'.
Your email address, e.g.
Your role and/or occupation, e.g. 'Orthopedic Surgeon'.
Your organization or institution (if applicable), e.g. 'Royal Free Hospital'.
Statement of Competing Interests


  • A rapid response is a moderated but not peer reviewed online response to a published article in a BMJ journal; it will not receive a DOI and will not be indexed unless it is also republished as a Letter, Correspondence or as other content. Find out more about rapid responses.
  • We intend to post all responses which are approved by the Editor, within 14 days (BMJ Journals) or 24 hours (The BMJ), however timeframes cannot be guaranteed. Responses must comply with our requirements and should contribute substantially to the topic, but it is at our absolute discretion whether we publish a response, and we reserve the right to edit or remove responses before and after publication and also republish some or all in other BMJ publications, including third party local editions in other countries and languages
  • Our requirements are stated in our rapid response terms and conditions and must be read. These include ensuring that: i) you do not include any illustrative content including tables and graphs, ii) you do not include any information that includes specifics about any patients,iii) you do not include any original data, unless it has already been published in a peer reviewed journal and you have included a reference, iv) your response is lawful, not defamatory, original and accurate, v) you declare any competing interests, vi) you understand that your name and other personal details set out in our rapid response terms and conditions will be published with any responses we publish and vii) you understand that once a response is published, we may continue to publish your response and/or edit or remove it in the future.
  • By submitting this rapid response you are agreeing to our terms and conditions for rapid responses and understand that your personal data will be processed in accordance with those terms and our privacy notice.
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.

Vertical Tabs

Other responses

  • Published on:
    A Position Statement from the COVID-19 Taskforce of the NNEdPro Global Centre for Nutrition and Health, on Vitamin D and high-risk groups in the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Shane McAuliffe, Science Communications Lead NNEdPro Global Centre for Nutrition and Health - Nutrition & Covid-19 Taskforce
    • Other Contributors:
      • Elaine Macaninch, Lead for Patient, Public and Practitioner Outreach
      • James Bradfield, Lead for Education, Awareness, and Implementation
      • Dominic Crocombe, Co-Chair Exec
      • Sumantra Ray, Co-Chair Ex-Officio

    We acknowledge increasing concerns around high-risk groups and COVID-19, about both susceptibility and clinical outcomes. There are many additional factors that are worthy of further research, including the potential role of ethnicity (1-3), inadequate vitamin D status (including both insufficiency and clinical deficiency) (4-6) and inequalities in socio-economic status (7,8). This is not an exhaustive list, and there are many other factors to consider, especially as COVID-19 is a new disease. Our understanding of its interactions, including those with nutrition are continually evolving and with it, so is the evidence base that can inform practice.

    There has been a focus on groups at higher risk during the pandemic, who also tend to be at higher risk of micronutrient deficiencies and poorer overall nutrition, and in such vulnerable groups, diet alone may be insufficient to meet requirements, so micronutrient deficiencies pose a considerable risk to health. In such cases, the immune system may be supported by supplementation, particularly to help correct deficiencies and attenuate the effects of concurrent treatments (9). These observations are particularly prudent in the case of Vitamin D, in which sufficiency is difficult to achieve in the general population at certain times of the year (10) and all year round in vulnerable populations (4,5,11). This is clearly evident for those in residential care, meaning supplementation will be essential to meet requirements....

    Show More
    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.
  • Published on:
    Existing meta-analysis of serum vitamin D and pulmonary function across nine population-based cohort studies contributes to the evidence base on vitamin D and respiratory health
    • Jiayi Xu, Postdoctoral Fellow Pamela Sklar Division of Psychiatric Genomics, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
    • Other Contributors:
      • Dana B. Hancock, Senior Genetic Epidemiologist & Director
      • Patricia A. Cassano, Professor & Director

    Lanham-New et al. reviewed current evidence of vitamin D associations with health conditions that are pertinent to SARS-CoV-2 virus/COVID-19 disease. Their review highlighted the importance of a well-balanced diet, including an adequate amount of vitamin D intake, to boost the immune system and to resist viral infection. Lanham-New et al. also noted positive associations reported in a single study between the blood metabolite 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) and lung function and noted that “formal systematic reviews/meta-analyses of these associations are urgently required.” We would like to draw attention to several published reports of observational cohort studies evaluating the association of serum 25OHD with lung function (1; 2; 3; 4; 5; 6; 7; 8; 9; 10; 11; 12; 13; 14; 15; 16; 17; 18) and to our meta-analysis that investigated this association across nine large population-based cohort studies (total N=27,128) (19).
    Our cross-ancestry meta-analysis included adults (age range: 19-95 yrs) living in northern latitudes (e.g. the Netherlands, Iceland, northern part of U.S.) and adults with darker skin tones (i.e., African ancestry participants), who may be at greater risk of vitamin D deficiency given limited sun exposure or slower production of vitamin D in the skin. Prior to combining association results for meta-analysis, the lung function outcomes, exposure (25OHD), and the covariates were harmonized, and the same statistical models were applied across the nine coh...

    Show More
    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.
  • Published on:
    POPULATION RESILIENCE We all need optimal back ground immunity, ahead of a second Covid-19 wave
    • Helga M Rhein, retired general practitioner previously Sighthill Health Centre, 380 Calder Road, Edinburgh EH11 4AU


    We all need optimal back ground immunity, ahead of a second Covid-19 wave

    In your report (1) you mention the value of sufficient vitamin D for a healthy immune system. You are missing out, however, that the immune function and regulation of appropriate genes and enzymes need a higher vitamin D level (25(OH)D), higher than 25 nmol/l (2-5), as does maximal PTH suppression (6) and is the physiological blood levels in outdoor living people (7). All advocate the optimal blood level to be above 75 nmol/l. An extensive evidence collection is maintained on a specified website (8), and improvements in many conditions have been shown when blood levels were higher (osteomalacia (9), heart disease (10), respiratory tract infections (11), depression (12), COPD (13), cancer survival (14-17) and many more), resulting in the worldwide consensus that levels should be higher than 25 nmol/l. A group of 48 scientists has also published a consensus statement in 2015 that a level of 100 nmol/l should be called sufficient (18). To reach such a level from an average UK level (approx 40 nmol/l) one needs much higher doses of vitamin D than 10 mcg (400 IU).

    But your report says a blood level of 25 nmol/l is sufficient and the majority would only need 10 mcg of a D-supplement.
    However, the Institute of Medicine in the US has declared the level of sufficiency as 50 nmol/l, and they advise also higher D-supplement intake. In contrast to the UK where suf...

    Show More
    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.
  • Published on:
    A call for randomized controlled clinical trial, not dismissal, is warranted

    Multiple lines of strong circumstantial arguments supporting the putative role of Vitamin D as candidate pandemic mitigation agents have been made based on unbiased genomics-guided tracing of SARS-CoV-2 targets in human cells which generated some quite unexpected findings. The title of the paper reporting observations is “Tripartite combination of candidate pandemic mitigation agents: Vitamin D, Quercetin, and Estradiol manifest properties of medicinal agents for targeted mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic defined by the genomics-guided tracing of SARS-CoV-2 targets in human cells”. One of the end points of this contribution is the identification of the tripartite combination of candidate pandemic mitigation agents comprising of Vitamin D/Quercetin/Estradiol. After the completion of the genomics screens, it was really quite unexpected conclusion to reach. However, after the follow-up analyses of available experimental and clinical observations it seems to make more sense. Please see the link below to the paper

    One of the main conclusions of the paper is that the randomized controlled clinical trial should be conducted to assess the potential clinical efficacy of the tripartite combination.

    Best regards,

    Dr. Gennadi V. Glinsky, MD, Ph.D.

    Show More
    Conflict of Interest:
    None declared.