Vitamin D across growth hormone (GH) disorders: From GH deficiency to GH excess

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24 Citations (Scopus)


The interplay between vitamin D and the growth hormone (GH)/insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I system is very complex and to date it is not fully understood. GH directly regulates renal 1 alpha-hydroxylase activity, although the action of GH in modulating vitamin D metabolism may also be IGF-I mediated. On the other hand, vitamin D increases circulating IGF-I and the vitamin D deficiency should be normalized before measurement of IGF-I concentrations to obtain reliable and unbiased IGF-I values. Indeed, linear growth after treatment of nutritional vitamin D deficiency seems to be mediated through activation of the GH/IGF-I axis and it suggests an important role of vitamin D as a link between the proliferating cartilage cells of the growth plate and GH/IGF-I secretion. Vitamin D levels are commonly lower in patients with GH deficiency (GHD) than in controls, with a variable prevalence of insufficiency or deficiency, and this condition may worsen the already known cardiovascular and metabolic risk of GHD, although this finding is not common to all studies. In addition, data on the impact of GH treatment on vitamin D levels in GHD patients are quite conflicting. Conversely, in active acromegaly, a condition characterized by a chronic GH excess, both increased and decreased vitamin D levels have been highlighted, and the interplay between vitamin D and the GH/IGF-I axis becomes even more complicated when we consider the acromegaly treatment, both medical and surgical. The current review summarizes the available data on vitamin D in the main disorders of the GH/IGF-I axis, providing an overview of the current state of the art.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)35-42
Number of pages8
Publication statusPublished - 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Endocrinology


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