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Proc Nutr Soc. 1999 Aug;58(3):719-27.

Vitamin A and immunity to viral, bacterial and protozoan infections.

Author information

1
Department of Ophthalmology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205, USA. rdsemba@jhmi.edu

Abstract

Studies in animal models and cell lines show that vitamin A and related retinoids play a major role in immunity, including expression of mucins and keratins, lymphopoiesis, apoptosis, cytokine expression, production of antibody, and the function of neutrophils, natural killer cells, monocytes or macrophages, T lymphocytes and B lymphocytes. Recent clinical trials suggest that vitamin A supplementation reduces morbidity and mortality in different infectious diseases, such as measles, diarrhoeal disease, measles-related pneumonia, human immunodeficiency virus infection and malaria. Immune responses vary considerably during different infections, and the available data suggest that the modulation of immune function by vitamin A may also vary widely, depending on the type of infection and immune responses involved.

PMID:
10604208
DOI:
10.1017/s0029665199000944
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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