Plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D, hormonal contraceptive use, and the plasma proteome in Caucasian, East Asian, and South Asian young adults.

J Proteome Res. 2013 Apr 5;12(4):1797-807. doi: 10.1021/pr4001042. Epub 2013 Mar 6.
García-Bailo B1, Jamnik J, Da Costa LA, Borchers CH, Badawi A, El-Sohemy A.

Vitamin D affects gene expression, but its downstream effects on the proteome are unclear. Hormonal contraceptives (HC), which affect vitamin D metabolism and have widespread effects on the plasma proteome, may confound the association between vitamin D and the proteome. We determined whether HC use modified the association between 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25D) and a panel of 54 high-abundance plasma proteins. Cross-sectional analyses were conducted in healthy, non-smoking female HC users (n=216), female HC non-users (n=502), and men (n=301) from Toronto, Canada. Plasma 25D was measured by HPLC-MS/MS, and proteins were measured by LC-multiple-reaction-monitoring (MRM)-MS. The 54 proteins clustered into four distinct proteomic profiles. A positive association was observed between Profile 1, containing positive acute phase proteins, and 25D. In female HC users, a J-shaped association existed between Profile 1 and 25D, but no associations existed in female HC non-users and men. Twelve proteins were individually associated with 25D in female HC users, but only two were associated with 25D in female HC non-users and no associations were observed in men. After accounting for hormone dose, only three proteins were associated with 25D. In summary, HC use is an important confounder of the association between circulating 25D and numerous plasma proteins.