Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Sun protects against childhood asthma

19.05.2011
Vitamin D, which is primarily absorbed from the sun, plays a role in protection against childhood asthma.

Now, a new study led by Valencian researchers has shown that children who live in colder, wetter cities are at greater risk of suffering from this respiratory problem, since there are fewer hours of sunlight in such places.

"Prolonged exposure to the sun can cause cancer, but it's also dangerous to avoid it. There has to be a balance between the pros and cons", Alberto Arnedo-Pena, an epidemiologist at the Public Health Centre in Castellón and lead author of the research, which is part of the International Study of Asthma and Allergies in Childhood (ISAAC), led by Luis García Marcos of the University of Murcia, tells SINC.

In fact, 90% of our vitamin D is synthesised through exposure to the sun. This vitamin, which can be found in various cell receptors, is usually found at lower levels in people with asthma. The study results show that there is a higher prevalence of this illness among children in wetter places with less sun (northern Spain).

The research, carried out on more than 45,000 children and teenagers from nine Spanish cities and published in the International Journal of Biometeorology, shows that climatic conditions, above all solar radiation, can in many cases explain the high geographical variation in the prevalence of asthma in Spain.

"Although we need more studies on this issue – this hypothesis is not even five years old - it is clear that an average level of sun exposure is important for the assimilation of vitamin D, a compound that is extremely important in preventing illnesses such as asthma, tuberculosis and other infectious diseases", stresses Arnedo-Pena.

The solar vitamin

In northern countries (where there are fewer hours of sunshine than in the Mediterranean), the advice is to spend 20 to 30 minutes' in the sun each day, although not at times within the highest risk period (from noon to 4pm). For now, no similar advice exists in Spain.

Once the benefits of sun exposure are understood, it can be seen that there is a problem in countries at latitudes higher than 40º north, where it is not possible to absorb enough vitamin D during the winter months. "People in these countries should take supplements to ensure they are not at risk", the researcher concludes.

References:

Alberto Arnedo-Pena; Luis García-Marcos; Jorge Fuertes Fernández-Espinar; Alberto Bercedo-Sanz; Inés Aguinaga-Ontoso; Carlos González-Díaz; Ignacio Carvajal-Urueña; Rosa Busquet-Monge; Maria Morales Suárez-Varela; Nagore García de Andoin; Juan Batlles-Garrido; Alfredo Blanco-Quirós; Angel López-Silvarrey Varela; Gloria García-Hernández. "Sunny hours and variations in the prevalence of asthma in schoolchildren according to the International Study of Asthma and Allergies (ISAAC) Phase III in Spain". Int J Biometeorol (2011) 55:423-434.

SINC Team | EurekAlert!
Further information:
http://www.plataformasinc.es

More articles from Studies and Analyses:

nachricht Drone vs. truck deliveries: Which create less carbon pollution?
31.05.2017 | University of Washington

nachricht New study: How does Europe become a leading player for software and IT services?
03.04.2017 | Fraunhofer-Institut für System- und Innovationsforschung (ISI)

All articles from Studies and Analyses >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Can we see monkeys from space? Emerging technologies to map biodiversity

An international team of scientists has proposed a new multi-disciplinary approach in which an array of new technologies will allow us to map biodiversity and the risks that wildlife is facing at the scale of whole landscapes. The findings are published in Nature Ecology and Evolution. This international research is led by the Kunming Institute of Zoology from China, University of East Anglia, University of Leicester and the Leibniz Institute for Zoo and Wildlife Research.

Using a combination of satellite and ground data, the team proposes that it is now possible to map biodiversity with an accuracy that has not been previously...

Im Focus: Climate satellite: Tracking methane with robust laser technology

Heatwaves in the Arctic, longer periods of vegetation in Europe, severe floods in West Africa – starting in 2021, scientists want to explore the emissions of the greenhouse gas methane with the German-French satellite MERLIN. This is made possible by a new robust laser system of the Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT in Aachen, which achieves unprecedented measurement accuracy.

Methane is primarily the result of the decomposition of organic matter. The gas has a 25 times greater warming potential than carbon dioxide, but is not as...

Im Focus: How protons move through a fuel cell

Hydrogen is regarded as the energy source of the future: It is produced with solar power and can be used to generate heat and electricity in fuel cells. Empa researchers have now succeeded in decoding the movement of hydrogen ions in crystals – a key step towards more efficient energy conversion in the hydrogen industry of tomorrow.

As charge carriers, electrons and ions play the leading role in electrochemical energy storage devices and converters such as batteries and fuel cells. Proton...

Im Focus: A unique data centre for cosmological simulations

Scientists from the Excellence Cluster Universe at the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Munich have establised "Cosmowebportal", a unique data centre for cosmological simulations located at the Leibniz Supercomputing Centre (LRZ) of the Bavarian Academy of Sciences. The complete results of a series of large hydrodynamical cosmological simulations are available, with data volumes typically exceeding several hundred terabytes. Scientists worldwide can interactively explore these complex simulations via a web interface and directly access the results.

With current telescopes, scientists can observe our Universe’s galaxies and galaxy clusters and their distribution along an invisible cosmic web. From the...

Im Focus: Scientists develop molecular thermometer for contactless measurement using infrared light

Temperature measurements possible even on the smallest scale / Molecular ruby for use in material sciences, biology, and medicine

Chemists at Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) in cooperation with researchers of the German Federal Institute for Materials Research and Testing (BAM)...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Plants are networkers

19.06.2017 | Event News

Digital Survival Training for Executives

13.06.2017 | Event News

Global Learning Council Summit 2017

13.06.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Touch Displays WAY-AX and WAY-DX by WayCon

27.06.2017 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Drones that drive

27.06.2017 | Information Technology

Ultra-compact phase modulators based on graphene plasmons

27.06.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>