Skip Navigation


Vitamin D Dubbed Most Popular Vitamin of 2012

For Immediate Release Contact: Rebekah Wright

SCTR research funds contributed two of top 16 publications

Charleston, S.C. (Feb. 15, 2013) – According to, there were 3,600 publications with vitamin D in the title or abstract in 2012, bringing the total number of vitamin D publications to 33,800. As a result, vitamin D was the most popular vitamin in 2012.
The following two studies were funded by the Medical University of South Carolina’s (MUSC) South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research Institute (SCTR) and each was chosen as a top 16 vitamin D paper for 2012 from 60 candidate papers. MUSC’s studies were conducted in SCTR’s Research Nexus, a state-of-the-art research infrastructure for clinical investigators on the MUSC campus.
4,000 IU vitamin D3 was of great help during pregnancy
A topic that generated considerable interest this year was the role of vitamin D during pregnancy. In a pair of papers, researchers from MUSC discussed the findings and implications of their randomized controlled trial of vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy [Hollis et al., 2012; Wagner et al., 2012]. More than 300 women enrolled in the study and were assigned to take supplements containing 400, 2000, or 4000 IU/d vitamin D3 or a placebo. This study found that it took 4000 IU/d to reach a nearly optimal level of vitamin D. Those taking the higher vitamin D doses had significantly reduced risk of primary Cesarean section delivery and pre-eclampsia.
“It really has been a collective effort and MUSC and SCTR should see this as an example of collaborative research at its best. We would never have been able to conduct these studies without the support of SCTR’s research infrastructure. We will continue to benefit from such support and collaboration,” said Carol Wagner, M.D., MUSC professor of pediatrics and neonatology, on the study’s findings.
The benefits of vitamin D in reducing risk of cancer
One of the important and well-documented effects of vitamin D is reduced risk of cancer and increased survival after cancer diagnosis. Another cancer paper reported the results of supplementation with 4000 IU/d vitamin D3 of those with low-grade biopsy-assayed prostate cancer [Marshall DT et al., 2012]. Forty-four patients successfully completed the one-year study. Twenty-four of the subjects (55%) showed a decrease in the amount of cancer; five subjects (11%) showed no change; 15 subjects (34%) showed an increase. Optimal vitamin D supplementation appears to be useful for treating those with cancer.
“We’ve had an encouraging response from the recently published open label study, including making the top 16 vitamin D papers of 2012,” said Sebastiano Gattoni-Celli, M.D., MUSC professor of radiation oncology and health research scientist, Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center. “We were also able to secure federal funds for a much larger randomized study to confirm the benefits of vitamin D supplementation for subjects with low-risk prostate cancer.”
This research was supported by the South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research (SCTR) Institute, with an academic home at the Medical University of South Carolina, through NIH/NCATS Grant Numbers UL1 RR029882 and UL1 TR000062.

About the SCTR Research Nexus

The SCTR Research Nexus enables and enhances patient-oriented research through funding, infrastructure, and expert clinical staffing, serving as an extended research partner for translational investigators. A cost-effective core laboratory, fully equipped outpatient clinic, and dental and imaging suites help to strengthen the discipline of clinical and translational science. Mobile research coordinators, nurses, nutritionists, IT specialists, and laboratory and administrative personnel provide integrated support across the research continuum. An industry-sponsored portfolio provides a value-added revenue stream. For more information, visit
About SCTR
The South Carolina Clinical & Translational Research Institute (SCTR) of the Medical University of South Carolina is the catalyst for changing the culture of biomedical research, facilitating sharing of resources and expertise, and streamlining research-related processes to bring about large-scale change in the clinical and translational research efforts in South Carolina. The SCTR Institute was established in 2006 in response to the National Institute of Health’s Clinical and Translational Science Award Program, funded by the National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences (NIH/NCATS Grant UL1 TR000062). For more information, visit
About MUSC
Founded in 1824 in Charleston, the Medical University of South Carolina is the oldest medical school in the South. Today, MUSC continues the tradition of excellence in education, research, and patient care. MUSC educates and trains more than 3,000 students and residents, and has nearly 13,000 employees, including approximately 1,500 faculty members. As the largest non-federal employer in Charleston, the university and its affiliates have collective annual budgets in excess of $1.7 billion. MUSC operates a 750-bed medical center, which includes a nationally recognized Children's Hospital, the Ashley River Tower (cardiovascular, digestive disease, and surgical oncology), and a leading Institute of Psychiatry. For more information on academic information or clinical services, visit

©  Medical University of South Carolina | Disclaimer