Dr Padma Murthi
Maternal vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy has been linked to impaired neurocognitive development in childhood. The mechanism by which vitamin D affects childhood neurocognition is unclear but may be via interactions with serotonin, a neurotransmitter involved in fetal brain development. In this study we aimed to explore associations between maternal and fetal vitamin D concentrations, and fetal serotonin concentrations at term.
The Ritchie Centre
Placental Endocrinology Group - Department of Medicine
Journal and article title
These observations provide the first evidence of an inverse relationship between maternal 25(OH)D and fetal serotonin concentrations. We propose that maternal vitamin D deficiency increases fetal serotonin concentrations and thereby contributes to longer-term neurocognitive impairment in infants and children.
Optimum maternal vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy may reduce neurocognitive deficits in infants and children.