Vitamin D metabolite concentrations in umbilical cord blood serum and associations with clinical characteristics in a large prospective mother-infant cohort in Ireland.

Authors: Kiely M, O'Donovan SM, Kenny LC, Hourihane JO, Irvine AD, Murray DM


J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2017 Mar;167:162-168

Vitamin D deficiency is widespread among mothers and neonates and quality clinical and analytical data are lacking. We used a CDC-accredited LC-MS/MS method to analyze vitamin D metabolites in cord sera from 1050 maternal-infant dyads in the prospective SCOPE Ireland Pregnancy and BASELINE Birth cohort studies, based in Cork, Ireland. The mean±SD total 25(OH)D was 34.9±18.1nmol/L; 35% of cords (50% during winter) had 25(OH)D <25nmol/L, 46% were <30nmol/L and 80% were <50nmol/L. In this predominantly white cohort, the main predictor of cord 25(OH)D [adj. mean difference in nmol/L (95% CI)] was summer delivery [19.2 (17.4, 20.9), P<0.0001]. Maternal smoking during pregnancy (9% prevalence) was negatively associated (P<0.002) with cord 25(OH)D [-4.83 (-7.9, -1.5) nmol/L]. There were no associations between cord 25(OH)D and birth weight or any anthropometric measures at birth. Despite the high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency at birth, there were no documented musculoskeletal complications during infancy, which was likely due to widespread supplementation with vitamin D. The mean±SD concentration of 3-epi-25(OH)D3, detectable in 99.4% of cord samples, was 3.3±1.9nmol/L. The proportion of 25(OH)D as 3-epi-25(OH)D3 was 11.2%. Cord 3-epi-25(OH)D3 concentrations were positively predicted by cord 25(OH)D3 [0.101 (0.099, 0.103) nmol/L, P<0.0001] and negatively by gestational age [-0.104 (-0.131, -0.076) nmol/L, P<0.0001] and maternal age [-0.010 (-0.019, -0.001) nmol/L, P<0.05]. 25(OH)D2 was detected in 98% of cord sera (mean±SD; 2.2±1.9nmol/L) despite low antenatal consumption of vitamin D2 supplements. In conclusion, these first CDC-accredited data of vitamin D metabolites in umbilical cord blood emphasise the high risk of very low vitamin D status in infants born to un-supplemented mothers. Experimental data to define maternal vitamin D requirements for prevention of neonatal deficiency at high latitude are required.



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