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Research Article

The role of 1 alpha, 25-dihydroxyvitamin D in the mediation of intestinal hyperabsorption of calcium in primary hyperparathyroidism and absorptive hypercalciuria.

R A Kaplan, M R Haussler, L J Deftos, H Bone and C Y Pak

Published May 1977

The cuase for the intestinal hyperabsorptionof calcium (Ca) in various forms of hypercalciurias was explored by a careful measurement of plasma 1 alpha, 25-dihydroxycholecalciferol [1 alpha, 25-(OH)I D] and by an assessment of intestinal Ca absorption and of parathyroid function. In 18 cases of primary hyperparathyroidism (PHPT), the mean plasma concentration of 1 alpha, 25-(OH)2D was significantly increased (4.9 +/- 2.2 SD ng/dl vs. 3.4 +/- 0.9 ng/dl for the control group), and was significantly correlated with fractional Ca absorption (alpha) (r = 0.80, P less than 0.001). Plasma 1 alpha, 25-(OH)2D was also correlated with urinary Ca (P less than 0.05), but not with serum Ca or phosphorus (P), P clearance, urinary cyclic AMP, or serum immunoreactive parathyroid hormone. In 21 cases of absorptive hypercalciuria (AH), plasma 1 alpha, 25-(OH)2D was elevated in one-third of cases, and the mean value of 4.5 +/- 1.1 ng/dl was significantly higher than that of the control group (P less than 0.01). Since relative hypoparathyroidism may be present, the normal absolute value of plasma 1 alpha, 25-(OH)2D, found in two-thirds of cases of AH, may be considered to be inappropriately high. Moreover, in the majority of cases of AH, the data points relating plasma 1 alpha, 25-(OH)2D and alpha fell within 95% confidence limits of values found in non-AH groups (including PHPT). The results suggest that the intestinal hyperabsorption of Ca in PHPT aw AH may be vitamin D dependent. However, the disturbance in vitamin D metabolism may not be the sole cause for the high Ca absorption in AH, since in some patients with AH, the intestinal Ca absorption appears to be inapp

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