Scientists at Kobe University, Japan suggests that bone marrow disease may be provoked by Vitamin D in the body. This study was published in the Blood Journal on 4 February 2019.
The human body consists of three types of blood cells which are red blood cells, white blood cells, and platelets. These cells are made from hematopoietic stem cells which are located in the bone marrow.
According to the study, Vitamin D may be contributing to a bone marrow disease known as myelofibrosis. Myelofibrosis is an unusual increase in the fibroblast cells. These cells produce collagen fibers. The bone marrow gets accumulated with these fibers which prevent the blood cells to produce normally.
Vitamin D is a type of vitamin which helps in the absorption of calcium in the body. The scientists focused their study on the relationship between bone and blood. During this study, the scientists performed a bone marrow transplant on a mouse model without vitamin D receptors. This means that the mouse had a high concentration of vitamin D in the body.
The scientists discovered that the hematopoietic stem cells were triggered by vitamin D signaling and grew into the immune system cells called the macrophages. These macrophages trigger young osteoblasts cells that create bones to induce bone hardening and myelofibrosis. The mice were given a low vitamin D diet and controlled macrophages. Scientists were able to prevent macrophages from arising.
The scientists further investigated the mouse models with the same genetic disorder as myelofibrosis patients. The mice suffered from the same symptoms as that of myelofibrosis patients.
The mice showed symptoms of bone hardening and fibrosis. The mice received treatment by giving them a low vitamin D diet, removing the vitamin D receptors and stopping the macrophages. The fibrosis parts were barely visible. This treatment resulted in adverting bone marrow fibrosis.
Katayama, a professor and one of the authors of the study says, “The only permanent cure for this disease is hematopoietic stem cell transplant, but this method is unsuitable for many elderly patients. These new findings may help to develop a treatment method for the elderly targeting the vitamin D pathway and macrophages.”
Hence the authors of the study revealed that the development of myelofibrosis is dependent on pathological macrophages produced by vitamin D receptor signaling.
A ray of hope can be seen as these outcomes open doors for treatment for people and especially for older people.