Genetic Variations of Vitamin A-Absorption and Storage-Related Genes, and Their Potential Contribution to Vitamin A Deficiency Risks Among Different Ethnic Groups

Masako Suzuki, Meika Tomita

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

Abstract

Vitamin A, an essential fat-soluble micronutrient, plays a critical role in the body, by regulating vision, immune responses, and normal development, for instance. Vitamin A deficiency (VAD) is a major cause of xerophthalmia and increases the risk of death from infectious diseases. It is also emerging that prenatal exposure to VAD is associated with disease risks later in life. The overall prevalence of VAD has significantly declined over recent decades; however, the rate of VAD is still high in many low- and mid-income countries and even in high-income countries among specific ethnic/race groups. While VAD occurs when dietary intake is insufficient to meet demands, establishing a strong association between food insecurity and VAD, and vitamin A supplementation is the primary solution to treat VAD, genetic contributions have also been reported to effect serum vitamin A levels. In this review, we discuss genetic variations associated with vitamin A status and vitamin A bioactivity-associated genes, specifically those linked to uptake of the vitamin in the small intestine and its storage in the liver, as well as their potential contribution to vitamin A deficiency risks among different ethnic groups.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number861619
JournalFrontiers in Nutrition
Volume9
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 28 2022

Keywords

  • ethnicity
  • genetic variations
  • micronutrient
  • retinoid
  • vitamin A deficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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