A proposed molecular mechanism of high-dose vitamin D3 supplementation in prevention and treatment of preeclampsia

Academic Article


  • A randomized prospective clinical study performed on a group of 74 pregnant women (43 presenting with severe preeclampsia) proved that urinary levels of 15-F2t-isoprostane were significantly higher in preeclamptic patients relative to the control (3.05 vs. 2.00 ng/mg creatinine). Surprisingly enough, plasma levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 in both study groups were below the clinical reference range with no significant difference between the groups. In vitro study performed on isolated placental mitochondria and placental cell line showed that suicidal self-oxidation of cytochrome P450scc may lead to structural disintegration of heme, potentially contributing to enhancement of oxidative stress phenomena in the course of preeclampsia. As placental cytochrome P450scc pleiotropic activity is implicated in the metabolism of free radical mediated arachidonic acid derivatives as well as multiple Vitamin D3 hydroxylations and progesterone synthesis, we propose that Vitamin D3 might act as a competitive inhibitor of placental cytochrome P450scc preventing the production of lipid peroxides or excess progesterone synthesis, both of which may contribute to the etiopathogenesis of preeclampsia. The proposed molecular mechanism is in accord with the preliminary clinical observations on the surprisingly high efficacy of high-dose Vitamin D3 supplementation in prevention and treatment of preeclampsia.
  • Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Zabul P; Wozniak M; Slominski AT; Preis K; Gorska M; Korozan M; Wieruszewski J; Zmijewski MA; Zabul E; Tuckey R
  • Start Page

  • 13043
  • End Page

  • 13064
  • Volume

  • 16
  • Issue

  • 6