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Sci Rep. 2018 Dec 6;8(1):17692. doi: 10.1038/s41598-018-35418-z.

The association between neonatal vitamin D status and risk of schizophrenia.

Author information

1
Queensland Brain Institute, University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland, Australia.
2
Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, The Park Centre for Mental Health, Wacol, Queensland, Australia.
3
Institute for Molecular Bioscience, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.
4
Department of Biomedicine, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
5
iPSYCH, The Lundbeck Foundation Initiative for Integrative Psychiatric Research, Aarhus, Denmark.
6
Mental Health Centre for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Copenhagen Region, Copenhagen, Denmark.
7
Clem Jones Centre for Ageing Dementia Research, University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Australia.
8
Center for Neonatal Screening, Department for Congenital Disorders, Statens Serum Institut, Copenhagen, Denmark.
9
National Centre for Register-Based Research, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
10
Centre for Integrated Register-based Research, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
11
Department of Biomedicine and iSEQ-Centre for Integrative Sequencing, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark.
12
Psychosis Research Unit, Aarhus University Hospital, Psychiatry, Aarhus, Denmark.
13
Queensland Brain Institute, University of Queensland, St. Lucia, Queensland, Australia. j.mcgrath@uq.edu.au.
14
Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, The Park Centre for Mental Health, Wacol, Queensland, Australia. j.mcgrath@uq.edu.au.
15
National Centre for Register-Based Research, Aarhus University, Aarhus, Denmark. j.mcgrath@uq.edu.au.

Abstract

Clues from the epidemiology of schizophrenia, such as the increased risk in those born in winter/spring, have led to the hypothesis that prenatal vitamin D deficiency may increase the risk of later schizophrenia. We wish to explore this hypothesis in a large Danish case-control study (n = 2602). The concentration of 25 hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) was assessed from neonatal dried blood samples. Incidence rate ratios (IRR) were calculated when examined for quintiles of 25OHD concentration. In addition, we examined statistical models that combined 25OHD concentration and the schizophrenia polygenic risk score (PRS) in a sample that combined the new sample with a previous study (total n = 3464; samples assayed and genotyped between 2008-2013). Compared to the reference (fourth) quintile, those in the lowest quintile (<20.4 nmol/L) had a significantly increased risk of schizophrenia (IRR = 1.44, 95%CI: 1.12-1.85). None of the other quintile comparisons were significantly different. There was no significant interaction between 25OHD and the PRS. Neonatal vitamin D deficiency was associated with an increased risk for schizophrenia in later life. These findings could have important public health implications related to the primary prevention of schizophrenia.

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