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J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2007 Mar;103(3-5):675-8. Epub 2007 Jan 16.

Season of diagnosis is a predictor of cancer survival. Sun-induced vitamin D may be involved: a possible role of sun-induced Vitamin D.

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Department of Radiation Biology, Institute for Cancer Research, The Norwegian Radium Hospital, Montebello, 0310 Oslo, Norway.


The calcidiol level in a group of Norwegians (14,000 individuals, age range 16-80) was found to be highest in late summer. The seasonal variation was larger for young than for old persons. The calcitriol concentration was practically constant throughout the year. Younger persons had less calcidiol and more calcitriol than older persons, indicating that the conversion of calcidiol to calcitriol is more efficient in younger persons. A seasonal variation of prognosis of cancer (colon-, breast-, prostate- cancer and Hodgkin lymphoma) was found. The survival is highest for summer and autumn diagnosis, corresponding to maximal calcidiol levels. Thus, calcidiol may act synergistically with traditional treatment modalities. In view of these calcitriol and calcidiol data, the seasonal variation of cancer survival may be related to the calcidiol gradient, indicating that this Vitamin D metabolite may be more important than believed so far.

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