Vitamin D and endothelial vasodilation in older individuals: Data from the PIVUS study

Marcello Maggio, Francesca De Vita, Fulvio Lauretani, Gian Paolo Ceda, Elena Volpi, Francesco Giallauria, Giuseppe De Cicco, Chiara Cattabiani, Håkan Melhus, Karl Michaëlsson, Tommy Cederholm, Lars Lind

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Context: Vitamin D plays a role in a wide range of extraskeletal processes, including vascular function. Endothelial dysfunction is a predictor of cardiovascular disease, especially in older subjects. However, the relationship between vitamin D levels and indexes of endothelial vasodilation has never been fully addressed in older individuals.

Objective: The objective of this study was to examine the association between vitamin D and endothelial function in a large community-based sample of older subjects.

Methods: This cross-sectional study involved 852 community-dwelling men and women aged 70 years from the Prospective Study of the Vasculature in Uppsala Seniors (PIVUS), with complete data on vascular function and 25-hydroxyvitamin D. We evaluated endothelium-dependent vasodilation by an invasive forearm technique with acetylcholine, endothelium-independent vasodilation by sodium nitroprussiate, flow-mediated vasodilation, and the pulse wave analysis (reflectance index). Vitamin D levels were measured by chemiluminescence. We used multivariate regression models adjusted for body mass index (model 1) and for multiple confounders (high-sensitivity C-reactive protein, insulin, total cholesterol, high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein- cholesterol, smoking, sex hormones, season of blood collection, hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular medications and diseases, statin usage, plasma calcium and calcium intake, PTH, physical exercise, liver and kidney function tests, albumin; model 2).

Conclusions: In older women, but not in men, vitamin D is positively and independently associated with EIDV.

Results: In women, but not in men, vitamin D levels were positively associated with endotheliumindependent vasodilation in both model 1 (β ± SE = 1.41 ± 0.54; P = .001), and model 2 (β ± SE = 2.01 ± 0.68; P = .003).We found no significant relationship between vitamin D levels and endothelium- dependent vasodilation, flow-mediated vasodilation, and reflectance index in both sexes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3382-3389
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 1 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Biochemistry
  • Endocrinology
  • Clinical Biochemistry
  • Biochemistry, medical


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