Markus Wehland

Potential Beneficial Effects of Vitamin D in Coronary Artery Disease

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperReviewResearchpeer-review


  • Christian Legarth
  • ,
  • Daniela Grimm
  • Marcus Krüger, Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg
  • ,
  • Manfred Infanger, Otto von Guericke University Magdeburg
  • ,
  • Markus Wehland

Vitamin D plays a pivotal role in bone homeostasis and calcium metabolism. However, recent research has indicated additional beneficial effects of vitamin D on the cardiovascular system. This review aims to elucidate if vitamin D can be used as an add-on treatment in coronary artery disease (CAD). Large-scale epidemiological studies have found a significant inverse association between serum 25(OH)-vitamin D levels and the prevalence of essential hypertension. Likewise, epidemiological data have suggested plasma levels of vitamin D to be inversely correlated to cardiac injury after acute myocardial infarction (MI). Remarkably, in vitro trials have showed that vitamin D can actively suppress the intracellular NF-κB pathway to decrease CAD progression. This is suggested as a mechanistic link to explain how vitamin D may decrease vascular inflammation and atherosclerosis. A review of randomized controlled trials with vitamin D supplementation showed ambiguous results. This may partly be explained by heterogeneous study groups. It is suggested that subgroups of diabetic patients may benefit more from vitamin D supplementation. Moreover, some studies have indicated that calcitriol rather than cholecalciferol exerts more potent beneficial effects on atherosclerosis and CAD. Therefore, further studies are required to clarify these assumptions.

Original languageEnglish
Article number99
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2020

    Research areas

  • Calcitriol, Cholecalciferol, Coronary artery disease, Ischemic heart disease, Vitamin D

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