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Study Finds Vitamin D Is Critical In Human Immune Response To Tuberculosis

“Vitamin D is needed to activate the immune system’s response to tuberculosis (TB),” a finding that “could lead to new treatments for the lung disease,” researchers from the University of California in Los Angeles (UCLA) said in a study published Wednesday in the journal Science Translational Medicine, Agence France-Presse reports. “Researchers have long known that vitamin D plays a role in the body’s response to TB, but the study … shows it must be present in adequate levels to trigger the immune response,” AFP writes.

“The team notes that vitamin D may help both innate and adaptive immunity, two systems that work synergistically together to fight infections,” the Times of India reports (10/13). “This finding could be crucial to efforts to treat the disease in parts of the world like Africa, because people with dark skin … are more likely to have vitamin D deficiencies,” AFP notes (10/12).

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Filling the need for trusted information on national health issues, the Kaiser Family Foundation is a nonprofit organization based in Menlo Park, California.