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Nat Rev Immunol. 2008 Sep;8(9):685-98. doi: 10.1038/nri2378.

Vitamin effects on the immune system: vitamins A and D take centre stage.

Author information

1
Gastrointestinal Unit, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts 02114, USA. j_rodrigo_mora@harvard.hms.edu

Abstract

Vitamins are essential constituents of our diet that have long been known to influence the immune system. Vitamins A and D have received particular attention in recent years as these vitamins have been shown to have an unexpected and crucial effect on the immune response. We present and discuss our current understanding of the essential roles of vitamins in modulating a broad range of immune processes, such as lymphocyte activation and proliferation, T-helper-cell differentiation, tissue-specific lymphocyte homing, the production of specific antibody isotypes and regulation of the immune response. Finally, we discuss the clinical potential of vitamin A and D metabolites for modulating tissue-specific immune responses and for preventing and/or treating inflammation and autoimmunity.

PMID:
19172691
PMCID:
PMC2906676
DOI:
10.1038/nri2378
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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