What is it about?

This work reveals a role for vitamin D receptor (VDR) in β-cell physiology and in protection from diabetes. We have shown that the expression of vitamin D receptor is downregulated in β-cells during the development of both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Contrasting, overexpression of the receptor in β-cells protects against diabetes development, at least in mice.

Featured Image

Why is it important?

Our findings show that VDR expression sustained levels in β-cells in diabetes context can be clue to protected them from the cell-damage. Also, the islet VDR downregulation during the diabetes development might help explain the mixed results that show vitamin D supplementation may or may not be beneficial in terms of glucose metabolism in diabetes.


Future studies should also address the potential causative role of β-cell vitamin D receptor downregulation in diabetes. The key question now is to understand how vitamin D receptor expression is controlled and, more specifically, what the mechanisms are underlying its decrease during diabetes, in particular in humans. This knowledge should help us to improve strategies for the treatment of diabetes based on vitamin D supplementation.

Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Vitamin D Receptor Overexpression in β-Cells Ameliorates Diabetes in Mice, Diabetes, February 2020, American Diabetes Association,
DOI: 10.2337/db19-0757.
You can read the full text:



The following have contributed to this page