Association between maternal vitamin D status during pregnancy and offspring cognitive function during childhood and adolescence

Authors : Veena SR, Krishnaveni GV, Srinivasan K, Thajna KP, Hegde BG, Gale CR, Fall CH

Publication Year : 2017

Abstract :


Animal studies have demonstrated poor cognitive outcomes in offspring in relation to maternal vitamin D deficiency before and/or during pregnancy. Human studies linking maternal vitamin D status during pregnancy with offspring cognitive function are limited. We aimed to test the hypothesis that lower maternal vitamin D status during pregnancy is associated with poor offspring cognitive ability in an Indian population.


Cognitive function was assessed in children from the Mysore Parthenon birth cohort during childhood (age 9-10 years; n=468) and adolescence (age 13-14 years; n=472) using 3 core tests from the Kaufman Assessment Battery for children and additional tests measuring learning, long-term retrieval/ storage, short-term memory, reasoning, verbal fluency, visuo-spatial ability, and attention and concentration. Maternal serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration was measured at 30±2 weeks of gestation.


During pregnancy 320 (68%) women had 'vitamin D deficiency' (serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration <50>


In this population, despite a high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy, there was no evidence of an association between maternal vitamin D status and offspring cognitive function.