Besides strengthening the bones Vitamin D has been found to be effective in treatment of resistant asthma.
Patients not responding to steroid treatment benefited from vitamin treatment as found by researchers from King's College London.
It is an indirect intervention wherein patients not responsive to steroid treatment after vitamin intervention respond to the treatment just fine.
Professor Tak Lee, Director of the MRC-Asthma UK Centre in Allergic Mechanisms of Asthma at King's College London and Imperial College said, "Research is really exciting and points the direction towards potential new strategies for reversing steroid resistance. This has major implications for how to treat patients with severe asthma and could also substantially reduce the use of NHS resources.'
Dr Catherine Hawrylowicz, a lead researcher said: 'The hope is that this work will lead to new ways to treat people who don't respond to steroid treatment as it currently stands, and it could also help those people who are on heavy doses of steroids to reduce the amount of medication they are taking.'
According to her: 'This is a great example of how productive basic science collaborations can translate into studies in patients. Our research began more than five years ago with Dr Anne O'Garra from the MRC National Institute for Medical Research at Mill Hill.'
She added: 'At the moment we only have a preliminary experimental observation, that ingestion of vitamin D3 can increase the responsiveness of T-cells from patients with steroid-resistant asthma to steroids. We now need to test the benefits of this treatment in the clinic, and we are currently putting a proposal together to carry out this work.
'Interestingly, vitamin D3 is at present occasionally administered to patients with severe asthma to help prevent steroid-induced osteoporosis. Our studies suggest that there is an additional potential benefit to this treatment.'