Increasing evidence indicates that vitamin D status is linked to severity of liver cirrhosis and patients’ survival. However, the potential role of vitamin D-related immunomodulation in hepatic decompensation and patients’ mortality in relation to vitamin D deficiency remains unknown. The aim of the current study is to evaluate the association between vitamin D status and vitamin D binding protein (VDBP) levels with serum cytokine and lipopolysaccharide binding protein (LBP) and to examine their role on disease severity and cirrhotics’ mortality.
One hundred consecutive Caucasian patients with liver cirrhosis were enrolled in the study. 25(OH)D, VDBP, and LBP concentrations were assessed by ELISA. Cytokine tumor necrosis factor-a (TNF-a), interleukin 6 (IL-6), IL-1β, IL-8, IL-10, and IL-12 levels were determined by Cytometric Bead Array.
25(OH)D levels were inversely correlated with CP score, MELD, IL-6, and CP stage and VDBP levels with CP score, MELD, IL-6, IL-8, LBP, and CP stage. Cirrhotics with 25(OH)D deficiency and severe deficiency had significantly higher CP score, increased IL-6 levels and lower VDBP levels. In the multivariate analysis, the independent prognostic factors associated with patients’ survival were CP stage B [hazard ratio = 6.75; 95% confidence interval (CI) 1.32, 34.43; P = 0.022], CP stage C (hazard ratio = 7.39; 95% CI 1.41, 38.81; P = 0.018), the presence of hepatocellular carcinoma (hazard ratio = 4.50; 95% CI 1.54, 13.13; P = 0.006) and 25(OH)D levels (hazard ratio = 0.87; 95% CI 0.80, 0.95; P = 0.002).
The results show that vitamin D status and VDBP levels are associated with liver cirrhosis severity and patients’ mortality, possibly through a proinflammatory immune response.
Vitamin D-related immunomodulation in patients with liver cirrhosis