The effects of vitamin D and genetics in Multiple Sclerosis and Type 1 Diabetes

Kira Riber Mygind, Mathilde Charlotte Schmidt, Camilla Toftlev, Diana Worm Jensen, Simone Maria Louise Andreasen & Katrine Douglas Galsgaard

Studenteropgave: Semesterprojekt


Multiple sclerosis (MS) and type 1 diabetes (T1D) are autoimmune diseases where the immune system produces antibodies against the body’s own tissue. The immune response in MS is caused by B- and T-cells that attack the myelin sheaths’ auto-antigens in the central nervous system, which results in demyelination and plaques. In T1D the immune response targets the β-cells in the pancreas, where insulin deficiency will happen due to the destruction of the β-cells. Studies show that genetic factors as well as vitamin D affect the progression of MS and T1D. The specific HLA-DRB1*1501 gene is associated with the development of MS, whereas the HLA-DRB1, HLA-DQA1, and HLA-DQB1 are associated to T1D. Both diseases are associated with the HLA-DRB1 gene encoding the MHC class II molecule, which could indicate a shared inheritance and could explain the reason why an individual with the organ specific disease MS has a bigger risk of developing the organ specific and systemic autoimmune disease T1D, or vice versa. Vitamin D3 has been shown to have a preventive effect on the development of both diseases. Calcitriol, which is the active metabolite of vitamin D, restores the balance between the immune cells T-regs, Th-1, Th-2 and Th-17. The suppression of Th-1 and Th-17 cells reduces the number of pro-inflammatory cytokines, which results in a reduced autoimmune response. MS and T1D are more frequently developed in Nordic countries compared to countries near equator due to the low sun exposure.

UddannelserMedicinalbiologi, (Bachelor/kandidatuddannelse) Bachelor el. kandidat
Udgivelsesdato28 maj 2014
VejledereSylvester Larsen