Studies conducted by neurologists at the University at Buffalo have shown a direct link between vitamin D levels and the brain function of people with multiple sclerosis. The findings were reported earlier this month at the American Academy of Neurology meeting. Clinical evaluation and MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) images revealed that low blood levels of vitamin D are associated with more disability, brain lesion load and brain atrophy in MS patients. The research also showed that higher levels of vitamin D3 and vitamin D3 metabolism byproducts (analyzed as a ratio) also were associated with better scores on disability tests, results showed, and with less brain atrophy and fewer lesions on MRI scans. Sarah A. Morrow, MD, UB assistant research professor of neurology/Jacobs Neurological Institute and lead author on the cognitive-impairment study said: “Results showed that MS patients who were impaired on tests of executive function — critical reasoning and abstract thinking — and the ability to plan and organize, were more likely to be deficient in vitamin D.” “This relationship held true when controlling for the season during which vitamin D was measured, as well as depression, which is known to be associated with lower vitamin D levels.”
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