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J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2019 May 2. doi: 10.23736/S0022-4707.19.09834-7. [Epub ahead of print]

Association the 25(OH) Vitamin D status with upper respiratory tract infections morbidity in water sports elite athletes.

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Uzbek State University of Physical Education and Sport, Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
Research Institute of Epidemiology, Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Tashkent, Uzbekistan.
Research Institute of Epidemiology, Microbiology and Infectious Diseases, Tashkent, Uzbekistan -



The aim of this study is to determine seasonal changes of total serum 25(OH) vitamin D (VD) concentration and its influence on upper respiratory tract infection (URTI) morbidity among water sports elite athletes.


The study was planned as a prospective, non-interventional, observational study. Study participants included 40 elite athletes and 30 control individuals. Serum levels of 25(OH) VD and TNF-α, IFN-γ, IL-4 and IL-6 were detected by ELISA technique. Frequency of acute URTI in participants was determined by medical cards and self-reported questionnaire during the year.


VD deficiency/insufficiency dominated in both groups of elite athletes, especially in synchronized swimmers (100%) in comparison with the control individuals (63.3%) (P≤0.05). Prevalence of VD deficiency/insufficiency depends on the season, but independently on the season the highest values were observed among athletes. VD sufficiency was detected in 30% and 13.3% of the control individuals in August and February and only in 10% of swimmers in August. More than 3 episodes of URTI were detected only in the elite athletes in winter-spring. The elevation of TNF-α, IL-4, IL-6 and decrease of IFN-γ levels were detected in all athletes, but they were more expressed in swimmers.


VD insufficiency is quite pronounced among elite athletes engaged in synchronized swimming and swimmers. It is accompanied with a decrease of IFN-γ, increase of TNF-α, IL-4 and IL-6 level, and elevation of URTI morbidity. Seasonal monitoring and correction of the VD level for normalization of cytokine profile and decrease of URTI morbidity is definitely advised.

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