Vitamin D deficiency accelerates ageing and age-related diseases: a novel hypothesis
An inspiring and very important article published in J Physiol. 2017 Nov 15;595(22):6825-6836
Ageing can occur at different rates, but what controls this variable rate is unknown. Here I have developed a hypothesis that vitamin D may act to control the rate of ageing. The basis of this hypothesis emerged from studyng the various cellular processes that control ageing. These processes such as autophagy, mitochondrial dysfunction, inflammation, oxidative stress, epigenetic changes, DNA disorders and alterations in Ca2+ and reactive oxygen species (ROS) signalling are all known to be regulated by vitamin D. The activity of these processes will be enhanced in individuals that are deficient in vitamin D. Not only will this increase the rate of ageing, but it will also increase the probability of developing age-related diseases such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis and cardiovascular disease. In individual with normal vitamin D levels, these ageing-related processes will occur at lower rates resulting in a reduced rate of ageing and enhanced protection against these age-related diseases.