Academy of Finland
Funding decision
Applicant / Contact person Heinonen, Kati
Organisation University of Helsinki
Project title Vitamin D and early origins of mental health - from observational studies to randomized trials
Decision No. 323910
Decision date 24.05.2019
Funding period 01.09.2019 - 31.08.2023
Funding 480 000
WebFOCUS Report
Project description
Prevalent and relatively easily modifiable exposure, vitamin D deficiency, during critical periods of brain development, has been suggested to be a potential risk factor for later mental health. Yet, the existing studies are limited and restrain the conclusions of the causal associations. This study will focus on vitamin D levels in the pregnant mother and in the child across early childhood as a risk factor for childhood mental disorders. Study will also test, whether children receiving higher than currently recommended daily doses of vitamin D supplementation fare better. Finally, using maternal and child’s genetic data study will further strengthen or refute the hypothesis of causal relationship between vitamin D and mental health. Project uses three unique study cohorts, including over 2000 mother-child pairs. Given the high prevalence and long-term negative effects of childhood mental disorders the findings from the current proposal can have a marked public health impact.