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Placental HIV transmission and vitamin D: Nutritional and immunological implications


  • J. R. Fitchett

    Corresponding author
    1. King's College School of Medicine, London, UK
    • Correspondence: Dr. Joseph Robert Fitchett, Academic Foundation Doctor in Infectious Diseases, Department of Infectious Diseases, King's College School of Medicine, London SE1 9RT, UK.


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Vitamin D is a well-known immunomodulator. The relationship between vitamin D status and human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) infection has attracted attention in recent literature. Evidence suggests there may be increased prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in HIV-infected children compared with HIV sero-negative counterparts. One study has linked increased mother-to-child transmission of HIV, child mortality and adverse perinatal outcomes to vitamin D deficiency. This article provides a brief introduction into the emerging information surrounding the role of vitamin D and the placenta on mother-to-child transmission of HIV.