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Vitamin D deficiency is associated with coronary artery calcification in cardiovascularly asymptomatic African Americans with HIV infection

Original Research

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Authors: Lai S, Fishman EK, Gerstenblith G, Brinker J, Tai H, Chen S, Li J, Tong W, Detrick B, Lai H

Published Date August 2013 Volume 2013:9 Pages 493 - 500

Shenghan Lai,1–4 Elliot K Fishman,2 Gary Gerstenblith,3 Jeffrey Brinker,3 Hong Tai,1 Shaoguang Chen,1 Ji Li,4 Wenjing Tong,1 Barbara Detrick,1 Hong Lai2

1Department of Pathology, 2Department of Radiology, 3Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD, USA; 4Department of Epidemiology, John Hopkins University, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Heath, Baltimore, MD, USA

Objective: Patients with HIV infection are at increased risk for coronary artery disease (CAD), and growing evidence suggests a possible link between vitamin D deficiency and clinical/subclinical CAD. However, the relationship between vitamin D deficiency and coronary artery calcification (CAC), a sensitive marker for subclinical CAD, in those with HIV infection is not well investigated.
Methods: CAC was quantified using a Siemens Cardiac 64 scanner, and vitamin D levels and the presence of traditional and novel risk factors for CAD were obtained in 846 HIV-infected African American (AA) participants aged 25 years or older in Baltimore, MD, USA without symptoms or clinical evidence of CAD.
Results: The prevalence of vitamin D deficiency (25-hydroxy vitamin D <10 ng/mL) was 18.7%. CAC was present in 238 (28.1%) of the 846 participants. Logistic regression analysis revealed that the following factors were independently associated with CAC: age (adjusted odds ratio [OR]: 1.11; 95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.08–1.14); male sex (adjusted OR: 1.71; 95% CI: 1.18–2.49); family history of CAD (adjusted OR: 1.53; 95% CI: 1.05–2.23); total cholesterol (adjusted OR: 1.006; 95% CI: 1.002–1.010); high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (adjusted OR: 0.989; 95% CI: 0.979–0.999); years of cocaine use (adjusted OR: 1.02; 95% CI: 1.001–1.04); duration of exposure to protease inhibitors (adjusted OR: 1.004; 95% CI: 1.001–1.007); and vitamin D deficiency (adjusted OR: 1.98; 95% CI: 1.31–3.00).
Conclusion: Both vitamin D deficiency and CAC are prevalent in AAs with HIV infection. In order to reduce the risk for CAD in HIV-infected AAs, vitamin D levels should be closely monitored. These data also suggest that clinical trials should be conducted to examine whether vitamin D supplementations reduce the risk of CAD in this AA population.

Keywords: African Americans, HIV infection, antiretroviral therapy, coronary artery calcification, vitamin D deficiency

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