Potential direct therapeutic role for Vitamin D
Vitamin D may directly prevent COVID-19 from entering lung epithelial cells; this means that Vitamin D might be a specific treatment (in addition to its potential role in prophylaxis). Here is the rationale:
1. COVID-19 enters lung cells by binding to ACE2 receptors .
2. ACE2 receptors utilize a specific interleukin (IL-6) when normally activated .
3. Blockade of IL-6 by tocilizumab may be an effective treatment for COVID-19 .
4. Vitamin D reduces IL-6 production in monocytes (and, presumably, macrophages) .
This provides a rationale for administration of Vitamin D (eg by intramuscular injection) as treatment in acutely ill patients with COVID-19.
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Competing interests: No competing interests