Prenatal and child vitamin D levels and allergy and asthma in childhood

Julia Sanguesa, Jordi Sunyer, Raquel Garcia-Esteban, Alicia Abellan, Ana Esplugues, Judith Garcia-Aymerich, Monica Guxens, Amaia Irizar, Jordi Julvez, Leire Luque-Garcia, Ana Cristina Rodriguez-Dehli, Adonina Tardon, Maties Torrent, Jesus Vioque, Martine Vrijheid, Maribel Casas*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Early-life vitamin D deficiency may impair immune system development contributing to allergy and asthma onset. Findings from prospective studies are inconsistent. Objective: To examine whether maternal and child vitamin D levels are associated with allergic and asthma-related symptoms throughout childhood in a Spanish birth cohort. Methods: 25-Hydroxyvitamin D 3 (25(OH)D 3) levels were measured in the serum of pregnant women (N = 2525) and children (N = 803). Information on allergic and asthma-related symptoms was obtained from repeated questionnaires from 1 to 9 years. Results: A total of 19% of mothers and 24% of children had deficient 25(OH)D 3 levels (<20 ng/ml). Higher child 25(OH)D 3 levels at 4 years were associated with lower odds of atopic eczema from 4 to 9 years (adjusted odds ratio = 0.90; 95% CI = 0.84–0.97 per 5 ng/ml). Higher maternal and child 25(OH)D 3 levels were associated with a lower prevalence of late-onset wheezing at the limit of statistical significance (adjusted relative risk ratio (RRR adj) = 0.86; 95% CI = 0.74–1.00 and RRR adj = 0.76; 95% CI = 0.58–1.02 per 5 ng/ml, respectively). All the remaining associations were null. Conclusion: Child 25(OH)D 3 levels at pre-school age are associated with a reduced odds of atopic eczema in later childhood and both maternal and child levels may reduce the prevalence of late-onset wheezing. Impact: In this Spanish birth cohort, with a total of 19% of mothers and 24% of children with deficient levels of vitamin D, higher child vitamin D at 4 years of age was associated with reduced odds of atopic eczema up to 9 years. There was also some evidence that higher maternal and child vitamin D levels reduced the prevalence of late-onset wheezing.Although these findings need replication, they may imply optimal vitamin D levels at pre-school age to prevent atopic eczema.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1745-1751
Number of pages7
JournalPediatric Research
Issue number6
Early online date3 Sept 2022
Publication statusPublished - May 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Cohort INMA Menorca: INMA Menorca was funded by grants from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Red INMA G03/176; CB06/02/0041; 97/0588; 00/0021-2; PI061756; PS0901958; PI14/00677 incl. FEDER funds), CIBERESP, Beca de la IV convocatoria de Ayudas a la Investigación en Enfermedades Neurodegenerativas de La Caixa, and EC Contract No. QLK4-CT-2000-00263. Cohort INMA Valencia: INMA Valencia was funded by Grants from UE (FP7-ENV-2011 cod 282957 and HEALTH.2010.2.4.5-1), Spain: ISCIII (Red INMA G03/176, CB06/02/0041; FIS-FEDER: PI03/1615, PI04/1509, PI04/1112, PI04/1931, PI05/1079, PI05/1052, PI06/1213, PI07/0314, PI09/02647, PI11/01007, PI11/02591, PI11/02038, PI12/00610, PI13/1944, PI13/2032, PI14/00891, PI14/01687, PI16/1288, and PI17/00663; Miguel Servet-FEDER CP11/00178, CP15/00025, and CPII16/00051), Generalitat Valenciana: FISABIO (UGP-15-230, UGP-15-244, and UGP-15-249), and Alicia Koplowitz Foundation 2017. Cohort INMA Sabadell: INMA Sabadell was funded by grants from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Red INMA G03/176; CB06/02/0041; PI041436; PI081151 incl.FEDER funds) PI12/01890 incl. FEDER funds; CP13/00054 incl. FEDER funds), CIBERESP, Generalitat de Catalunya-CIRIT 1999SGR 00241, Generalitat de Catalunya-AGAUR (2009 SGR 501, 2014 SGR 822), Fundació La marató de TV3 (090430), Spanish Ministry of Economy and Competitiveness (SAF2012-32991 incl. FEDER funds), Agence Nationale de Securite Sanitaire de l’Alimentation de l’Environnement et du Travail (1262C0010), European Commission (261357, 308333, 603794 and 634453). J. Sangüesa holds a PFIS fellowship, funded by the Instituto de Salud Carlos III through the project FI19/00124 (Co-funded by European Social Fund, ‘Investing in your future’). J.J. and M.C. hold a Miguel Servet contract (CPII19/00015 and CP16/00128, respectively) awarded by the Instituto de Salud Carlos III (co-funded by the European Social Fund ‘Investing in your future’). Generalitat de Catalunya-CIRIT 1999SGR 00241. We acknowledge support from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Innovation and the State Research Agency through the ‘Centro de Excelencia Severo Ochoa 2019-2023’ Program (CEX2018-000806-S), and support from the Generalitat de Catalunya through the CERCA Program. Cohort INMA-Asturias: this study was funded by grants from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (Red INMA G03/176 and CB06/02/0041), FIS-PI042018 incl. FEDER funds, FIS-PI09/02311 incl. FEDER funds, FIS-PI13/02429 incl. FEDER funds, FIS-PI18/00909 incl. FEDER funds, CIBERESP, Obra Social Cajastur/Fundación Liberbank and UNIVERSIDAD DE OVIEDO. Cohort INMA-Gipuzkoa: this study was funded by grants from Instituto de Salud Carlos III (FIS-PI06/0867, FIS-PI09/00090, FIS-PI13/02187 and FIS-PI18/01142 incl. FEDER funds), CIBERESP, Department of Health of the Basque Government (2005111093, 2009111069, 2013111089 and 2015111065), and the Provincial Government of Gipuzkoa (DFG06/002, DFG08/001 and DFG15/221) and annual agreements with the municipalities of the study area (Zumarraga, Urretxu, Legazpi, Azkoitia y Azpeitia y Beasain). The funding sources had no involvement in the study design, the collection, analysis and interpretation of data or in the writing of the report and in the decision to submit the article for publication.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022, The Author(s), under exclusive licence to the International Pediatric Research Foundation, Inc.


Dive into the research topics of 'Prenatal and child vitamin D levels and allergy and asthma in childhood'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this