Serum vitamin A concentrations in asthmatic children in Japan

Background: Vitamin A is an essential micronutrient with important roles in immunity and maintenance of normal epithelial cell differentiation. Little information is available regarding the relationship between vitamin A concentrations and asthma despite the repair of epithelial and other structural changes being of utmost importance for the relief of symptoms and control of the disease. The authors evaluated vitamin A and vitamin E concentrations in well-nourished children with asthma.

Methods: The serum vitamin A and vitamin E concentrations were measured by high performance liquid chromatography methods. Statistical analysis was performed using the Mann–Whitney U-test and Peason`s correlation coefficient test.

Results: According to these methods, the mean serum vitamin A concentrations were significantly lower (19.41 ± 7.45 μg/dL, mean ± SD) in asthmatic children than controls (29.52 ± 11.34 μg/dL, P = 0.0001). To compare the correlation of C-reactive protein and serum vitamin A concentrations, there was also significant difference between the two groups.

Conclusion: The data suggest that there is a correlation between vitamin A deficiency and the mechanism of asthmatic response. These data support that the mechanism of hypovitaminosis A in asthmatic children may involve not only the acute phase response but also the various degrees of chronic epitherial damage of airways

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