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Food Allergy | Can Vitamin D Supplementation in Infants Prevent Food Allergy in the First Year of Life? The VITALITY Trial

Food Allergy research study

What is the primary objective of this study?

There is an urgent need to prevent the onset and progression of food allergy in our population. Evidence demonstrates that food allergy and atopic eczema represent the earliest manifestations of the atopic march with 50% of infants with food allergy predicted to develop respiratory allergic diseases later in life. We report that Australia has the highest prevalence of IgE-mediated food allergy in the world, with 10% of infants having challenge-proven food allergy in Melbourne. There has been a 5-fold increase in hospital admissions for life-threatening anaphylaxis. These changes are most pronounced in children less than 5 years, suggesting a causal role for early life determinants. We have primary data to inform hypotheses for the rise in food allergy, which appears to result from potentially modifiable factors related to the modern lifestyle, particularly Vitamin D insufficiency (VDI), and have demonstrated an association between VDI and increased risk of challenge-proven food allergy in 12-month old infants, which supports numerous ecological studies showing an increased risk of food allergy the further a child resides from the equator (associated with decreased UV exposure and Vitamin D levels). Despite Australia's sunny climate, population rates of VDI have steadily increased in infants and pregnant women in parallel to the apparent rise in food allergic disease. This association is biologically plausible, as there is evidence Vitamin D is critical to the healthy development of the immune system in early life. We propose an intervention study to assess if infant Vitamin D supplementation during the first year of life significantly decreases the risk of early-onset food allergy. Australia is ideally placed to answer this important question since, unlike the USA, Canada and Europe, there are no population recommendations for routine infant supplementation with Vitamin D and we are one of the few developed countries that do not supplement the food chain supply with Vitamin D.

Who is eligible to participate?

Inclusion Criteria: -Healthy, term, breastfeeding infants who will be predominately breastfed for at least 6-months. This will be determined by answering yes/no to question 'do you intend to breastfeed until your infant is at least 6 months of age.' Exclusion Criteria: - Infants who have already received postnatal vitamin D supplementation - prematurity (<37 weeks)/low birthweight <2500 g - poor health due to a current or past significant disease state or congenital abnormality.

Which medical condition, disease, disorder, syndrome, illness, or injury is researched?

Food Allergy

Study Interventions

Interventions can include giving participants drugs, medical devices, procedures, vaccines, and other products that are either investigational or already available or noninvasive approaches such as surveys, education, and interviews.

Drug:Vitamin D400 IU/daily for 10 months

Drug:placeboidentical placebo daily

Study Arms

Research studies and clinical trials typically have two or more research arms. An arm is a group of people who receive the same treatment in the study.

vitamin D400 IU /daily cholecalciferol/vitamin D

placebocarrier formulation minus vitamin D

Study Status

Recruiting

Start Date: December 2014

Completed Date: December 2020

Phase: Phase 4

Type: Interventional

Design:

Primary Outcome: the prevalence and severity of challenge-proven food allergy in study participants with positive skin prick tests (SPT)

Secondary Outcome: prevalence of food sensitisation (positive skin prick) test

Study sponsors, principal investigator, and references

Principal Investigator: Katie Allen, PhD

Lead Sponsor: Murdoch Childrens Research Institute

Collaborator:

More information:https://clinicaltrials.gov/show/NCT02112734

Allen KJ, Koplin JJ, Ponsonby AL, Gurrin LC, Wake M, Vuillermin P, Martin P, Matheson M, Lowe A, Robinson M, Tey D, Osborne NJ, Dang T, Tina Tan HT, Thiele L, Anderson D, Czech H, Sanjeevan J, Zurzolo G, Dwyer T, Tang ML, Hill D, Dharmage SC. Vitamin D insufficiency is associated with challenge-proven food allergy in infants. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2013 Apr;131(4):1109-16, 1116.e1-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jaci.2013.01.017. Epub 2013 Feb 27.

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