Vitamin D deficiency and Bladder Cancer

February 17th, 2013

The active metabolite of Vitamin D is Vitamin D3. In a recent study published in the JNCI, September 2012 issue, the authors noted a statistically significant increase in the risk of Bladder Cancer in individuals with low plasma concentrations of Vitamin D3. It is felt that Vitamin D3 favorably upregulates Fibroblast Growth Factor Receptor 3 (FGFR3). Mutations in FGFR3 are known to be associated with urothelial carcinoma. Urine samples evaluating for FGFR3 mutations, to diagnose urothelial carcinoma, has a positive predictive value of 95% when detected in patients with no history of Bladder Cancer. It appears that patients with aggressive bladder cancer have low expression of wild- type FGFR3 in association with low plasma concentrations of Vitamin D3. Therefore, it is possible that low plasma concentrations of Vitamin D3 may predict increased risk for bladder cancer, with more aggressive types of bladder cancer manifesting in those with significantly low Vitamin D3 levels.