A cancer research institute named “Dana-Farber Cancer Institute” has recently found the correlation between the immune system and vitamin D. they took a large population as sample and observed that vitamin D boost up the immune system that can protect against cancer. Researchers have showed vitamin D as the “sunshine vitamin” because of its property. This vitamin becomes activated under sun exposure, have a vital role to prevent cancer.
A senior scientist of that institute, Shuji Ogino said, “People with high levels of vitamin D in their bloodstream have a lower overall risk of developing colorectal cancer”. T-cells are main component of the human immune system that can protect against malignancies. The scientist also state that, “Laboratory research suggests that vitamin D boosts immune system function by activating T cells that recognize and attack cancer cells. In this study, we wanted to determine if these two phenomena are related: Does vitamin D’s role in the immune system account for the lower rates of colorectal cancer in people with high circulating levels of the vitamin?”
For that research, Shuji and colleagues analyzed the data from 170,000 individuals, participate in two long term health project, Nurses’ Health Study and Health Professionals Follow-up Study. Among those people, the researchers have compared the two groups, colorectal cancer patients and normal healthy people. A data of their blood samples collected when no cancer had been developed, it was about from 1990s. The studies found that the healthy people contained a special substance, which may protect themselves from colorectal cancer. The substance is 25-hydroxy vitamin D, an active form of vitamin D that produces from the liver.
Researchers have found that, patients who have low amount of 25-hydroxy vitamin D, are in a high risk of developing tumors in colorectal area with a lower number of activated T-cells.
Shuji also said, “This is the first study to show evidence of the effect of vitamin D on anti-cancer immune function in actual patients, and vindicates basic laboratory discoveries that vitamin D can interact with the immune system to raise the body’s defenses against cancer”. And he added, “In the future, we may be able to predict how increasing an individual’s vitamin D intake and immune function can reduce his or her risk of colorectal cancer.”