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Nat Rev Cancer. 2014 May;14(5):342-57. doi: 10.1038/nrc3691. Epub 2014 Apr 4.

The role of vitamin D in reducing cancer risk and progression.

Author information

1
Department of Medicine, Division of Endocrinology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305, USA.
2
Departments of Epidemiology and Nutrition, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts 02115, USA.
3
Department of Pediatrics, Division of Pediatric Endocrinology, Stanford University School of Medicine, Stanford, California 94305, USA.

Abstract

Vitamin D is not really a vitamin but the precursor to the potent steroid hormone calcitriol, which has widespread actions throughout the body. Calcitriol regulates numerous cellular pathways that could have a role in determining cancer risk and prognosis. Although epidemiological and early clinical trials are inconsistent, and randomized control trials in humans do not yet exist to conclusively support a beneficial role for vitamin D, accumulating results from preclinical and some clinical studies strongly suggest that vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of developing cancer and that avoiding deficiency and adding vitamin D supplements might be an economical and safe way to reduce cancer incidence and improve cancer prognosis and outcome.

PMID:
24705652
DOI:
10.1038/nrc3691
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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