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Vitamin D Status: Association with iron therapy effectiveness and risk of malaria infection

Key Contact: Sarah Cusick | Visit Activity Website

Activity Dates: 9/1/2014 - 12/31/2016

Country(ies): Uganda

Contact Information

Activity Description

In many regions, iron deficiency and malaria co-occur and afflict young children disproportionately. However, treatment of iron deficiency in children with malaria has proven ineffective at improving iron status and in some studies has worsened malaria (4-6), leaving millions of children at risk for the cognitive consequences of untreated iron deficiency. Giving an anti-inflammatory agent along with iron therapy and antimalarial treatment may therefore enhance iron uptake and utilization in children with co-occurring iron deficiency and malaria, leading to better cognitive and behavioral outcomes. In this study, we will establish the relationship of vitamin D status with response to iron therapy and immunologic response to malaria by measuring 25-hydroxy vitamin D (25[OH]D) and antimicrobial peptides in plasma samples collected in our recently completed study of iron therapy in Ugandan children with severe malaria. We hypothesize that higher levels of 25(OH)D will be associated with an improved response to iron therapy and a more effective immunologic response to malaria. - See more at:

Activity Types


Academic Health Center Units

Medical School
     Department of Pediatrics

Other Collaborators

Dr. Lynda Polgreen, UCLA Pediatrics

Partner Organizations

Global Health Uganda and Makerere University


University of Minnesota Department of Pediatrics Cross-Divisional Award

Activity Topics

Child Health, Malaria, Nutrition

Special Tags

Doris Duke Clinical Research Fellowship Site, Fogarty Global Health Fellowship Site