LOW MATERNAL VITAMIN D AS A RISK
FACTOR FOR SCHIZOPHRENIA: A PILOT STUDY USING BANKED SERA
J McGrath, D Eyles, B Mowry, R
Yolken, S Buka
Schizophrenia Research 2003 Sept.
OBJECTIVE: Evidence from
epidemiology suggests that low maternal vitamin D may be a risk factor for
METHOD: Based on sera taken
during the third trimester, we compared the level of 25 hydroxyvitamir D3 in
mothers of individuals with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorders versus
mothers of unaffected controls. For each case, we selected two control
matched on race, gender and date of birth of the offspring.
RESULT: There was no significant
difference in third trimester maternal vitamin D in the entire sample (cases =
26, controls = 51). Within the subgroup of black individuals (n = 21),
there was a trend level difference in the predicted direction.
CONCLUSIONS: Maternal vitamin D
does not operate as a continuous graded risk factor for schizophrenia, however,
the results in the black subgroups raise the possibility that below a certain
critical threshold, low levels of maternal vitamin D may be associated with an
increased risk of schizophrenia.