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Endocrinol Metab Clin North Am. 2012 Sep;41(3):571-94. doi: 10.1016/j.ecl.2012.05.004. Epub 2012 Jun 29.

Extraskeletal effects of vitamin D.

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Laboratory for Clinical and Experimental Endocrinology, Catholic University Leuven (KUL), O&N I Herestraat 49 - bus 902, Leuven 3000, Belgium.


The presence of vitamin D receptors in diverse tissues like immune cells, beta-cells in the pancreas, and cardiac myocytes has prompted research to evaluate the impact of vitamin D deficiency on the occurrence of immune diseases, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease (CVD). The expression of receptors not only in normal cells, but also in cancer cells including breast, prostate, and colon cancer cells has moreover opened the path to therapeutic exploitation of vitamin D or its metabolites and hypocalcemic structural analogues as pharmaceutical tools in the fight against chronic non-communicable diseases like diabetes, CVD, and cancer.

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