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Obesity (Silver Spring). 2011 Mar;19(3):588-94. doi: 10.1038/oby.2010.239. Epub 2010 Oct 14.

Contribution of adipose tissue to plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations during weight loss following gastric bypass surgery.

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  • 1Department of Surgery, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, Georgia, USA.


Roux-en-y gastric bypass (RYGB) surgery is associated with dramatic improvements in obesity-related comorbidity, but also with nutritional deficiencies. Vitamin D concentrations are depressed in the severely obese, but the impact of weight loss via RYGB is unknown. We determined associations between adiposity and systemic 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) during weight loss and the immediate and longer-term effects of RYGB. Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations and fat mass (FAT) were determined by immunoassay and air displacement plethysmography, respectively, at 0 (before RYGB surgery), and at 1, 6, and 24 months in severely obese white and African American (AA) women (n = 20). Decreases in adiposity were observed at 1, 6, and 24 months following RYGB (P < 0.05). Plasma 25(OH)D concentrations increased at 1 month (P = 0.004); a decreasing trend occurred over the remainder months after surgery (P = 0.02). Despite temporary improvement in vitamin D status, a high prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency was observed (76, 71, 67, and 82%, at baseline, 1, 6, and 24 months, respectively), and plasma 25(OH)D concentrations were lower in AA compared to white patients (P < 0.05). Strong positive baseline and 1 month cross-sectional correlations between FAT and plasma 25(OH)D were observed, which remained after adjustment for age and race subgroup (β = 0.76 and 0.61, respectively, P = 0.02). In conclusion, 25(OH)D concentrations increased temporarily and then decreased during the 24 months following RYGB. The acute increase and the positive associations observed between adipose tissue mass and systemic 25(OH)D concentrations suggest storage in adipose tissue and release during weight loss.

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