Original Article

Studying the Effects of Vitamin A on the Severity of Allergic Rhinitis and Asthma


Allergic asthma is a complex lung disease characterized by breathlessness, airway inflammation, and obstruction. Allergy and allergic rhinitis (AR) are the main triggers of asthma. Vitamin A is an important supplementary factor for the physiological activation of the immune system. In the present study, we investigated the effects of vitamin A on the exacerbation of allergic asthma symptoms.
BALB/c mice were allocated to four groups. Asthma was created in two groups, and in the other two groups, rhinitis was induced. One of the asthma groups and one of the rhinitis groups orally received vitamin A (20 IU/g for 15 days). The levels of Immunoglobulin (Ig) E, histamine, leukotriene B4 (LTB4), Cysteinyl leukotriene receptor (Cys-LT), interleukin (IL)-4, IL-5, IL-13, and IL-35 as well as eosinophil peroxidase activity, were measured. Also, the histopathology of mice lungs was evaluated.
The levels of total IgE, LTB4, Cys-LT, IL-4, IL-5, IL-17, and IL-33, eosinophil peroxidase activity, perivascular and peribronchial inflammation significantly decreased in vitamin A-treated asthma and rhinitis groups compared to non-treated groups. Also, IL-13 and histamine levels, hyperplasia of the goblet cell, and hyper-secretion of the mucus insignificantly decreased in vitamin A-treated asthma and rhinitis groups.
Asthma and AR are common diseases that are generally developed due to the dysregulation of the immune system. Vitamin A plays an important role in controlling the immunopathologic mechanisms of allergic diseases. Vitamin A could be a useful supplement in managing AR and asthma by decreasing the severity of inflammatory responses. Therefore, control of vitamin A deficiency is recommended in Allergy.

1. Athari SS. Targeting cell signaling in allergic asthma. Signal Transduct Target Ther. 2019;4:45.
2. Athari SS, Athari SM. The importance of eosinophil, platelet and dendritic cell in asthma. Asian Pac J Trop Dis. 2014;4(1):41-7.
3. Athari SM, Afshari F, Eftekhari A, Athari SS. The surveillance system, diagnosis and treatment challenges of asthma and health policy orientation of main challenges. J Pain Manage Ther. 2017;1(2):1-5
4. Athari SS, Pourpak Z, Folkerts G, Garssen J, Moin M, Ian M, et al. Conjugated Alpha-Alumina nanoparticle with vasoactive intestinal peptide as a Nano-drug in treatment of allergic asthma in mice. Eur J Pharmacol. 2016;791(8):811–20.
5. Gromadzinska J, Polanska K, Kozlowska L, Mikolajewska K, Stelmach I, Jerzynska J, et al. Vitamins A and E during Pregnancy and Allergy Symptoms in an Early Childhood-Lack of Association with Tobacco Smoke Exposure. Int J Environ Res. 2018;15(8):1245-9.
6. Bates CJ. Vitamin A. Lancet. 1995;345(8941):31-5.
7. Shimrit Bar-El Dadon, Ram Reifen. Vitamin A and the epigenome. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2017;57(11):2404-11.
8. Shen T, Bimali M, Faramawi M, Orloff MS. Consumption of Vitamin K and Vitamin A Are Associated With Reduced Risk of Developing Emphysema: NHANES 2007–2016. Front. Nutr. 2020;7(3):47-9.
9. De Moura FF, Moursi M, Lubowa A, Ha B, Boy E, Oguntona B, et al. Cassava intake and vitamin A status among women and preschool children in Akwa-Ibom, Nigeria. PLoS ONE. 2015;10:e0129436.
10. Timoneda J, Rodríguez-Fernández L, Zaragozá R, M Pilar Marín, M. Teresa Cabezuelo, Luis Torres. Vitamin A Deficiency and the Lung. Nutrients. 2018;10(9):1132-8.
11. Chambon P. A decade of molecular biology of retinoic acid receptors. FASEB J. 1996;10(9):940–54.
12. World Health Organization. Global Prevalence of Vitamin A Deficiency in Populations at Risk 1995–2005; World Health Organization: Geneva, Switzerland, 2009; ISBN 978-92-4-159801-9.
13. Karim T,Muhit M,KhandakerG. Interventions to prevent respiratory diseases: Nutrition and the developing world. Paediatr Respir Rev. 2017;22(11):31–7.
14. Checkley W, West K, Wise R, Baldwin M, Wu L, Le Clerq, et al. Maternal vitamin A supplementation and lung function in offspring. N Engl J Med. 2010;362(12):1784–94.
15. Schwartz E, Zelig R, Parker A, Johnson S. Vitamin A supplementation for the prevention of bronchopulmonary dysplasia in preterm infants: An update. Nutr Clin Pract. 2017;32(5):346–53.
16. Biesalski HK, Nohr D. Importance of vitamin-A for lung function and development. Mol Aspects Med. 2003;24(5):431–40.
17. Esteban-Pretel G,Marín MP,Renau-Piqueras J, Barber T,Timoneda J. Vitamin A deficiency alters rat lung alveolar basement membrane: Reversibility by retinoic acid. JNutrBiochem. 2010;21(8):227–36.
18. McCusker C, Chicoine M, Hamid Q, Mazer B. Site-specific sensitization in a murine model of allergic rhinitis: role of the upper airway in lower airways disease. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2002;110(8):891–8.
19. Nakaya M, Dohi M, Okunishi K, Nakagome K, Tanaka R, Imamura M, et al. Noninvasive system for evaluating allergen induced nasal hypersensitivity in murine allergic rhinitis. Lab Invest. 2006;86(12):917–26.
20. Kianmehr M, Ghorani V, Boskabady MH. Animal model of asthma, various methods and measured parameters, a methodological review. Iran J Allergy Asthma Immunol.2016;15(6):445-65.
21. Tian Y, Tian Q, Wu Y, Peng X, Chen Y, Li Q, et al. Vitamin A supplement after neonatal Streptococcus pneumoniae pneumonia inhibits the progression of experimental asthma by altering CD4+T cell subsets. Scientific Reports. 2020;10(1):4214-9.
22. Mehta AK, Gaur N, Arora N, Singh BP. Effect of choline chloride in allergen-induced mouse model of airway inflammation. Eur Respir J. 2007;30(4):662–71.
23. Marquez HA, Cardoso WV. Vitamin A-retinoid signaling in pulmonary development and disease. Mol CellPediatr. 2016;3(1):28-9.
24. Chen F, Marquez H, Kim YK, Qian J, Shao F, Fine A, et al. Prenatal retinoid deficiency leads to airway hyperresponsiveness in adult mice. J Clin Investig. 2014;124(2):801–11.
25. Bai YJ, Dai RJ. Serum levels of vitamin A and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 (25OHD3) as reflectors of pulmonary function and quality of life (QOL) in children with stable asthma: A case-control study. Medicine. 2018;97:e9830.
26. Elenius V, Palomares O, Waris M, Turunen R, Puhakka T, Rückert B, et al. The relationship of serum vitamins A, D, E and LL-37 levels with allergic status, tonsillar virus detection and immune response. PLoS ONE. 2017;12:e0172350.
27. Banchereau J, Pascual V, O'Garra A. From IL-2 to IL-37: the expanding spectrum of anti-inflammatory cytokines. Nat Immunol. 2012;13(10):925-31.
28. Nurmatov U, Devereux G, Sheikh A. Nutrients and foods for the primary prevention of asthma and allergy: systematic review and meta-analysis. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2011;127(3):724-33.
29. Mendelsohn C, Lohnes D, Décimo D, Lufkin T, Meur L, Chambon P, et al. Function of the retinoic acid receptors (RARs) during development (II). Multiple abnormalities at various stages of organogenesis in RAR double mutants. Development.1994;120(10):2749-71.
30. Luo Z, Liu E, Luo J, Li F, Li S, Zeng F, et al. Vitamin A deficiency and wheezing. World J Pediatr. 2010;6(1):81–4.
31. Cayrol C, Girard JP. IL-33: an alarmin cytokine with crucial roles in innate immunity, inflammation and allergy. CurrOpinImmunol. 2014;31(2):31–7.
32. Liew F, Pitman N, McInnes I.Disease-associated functions of IL-33: the new kid in the IL-1 family. Nat Rev Immunol. 2010;10(2):103-10.
33. Bartemes KR, Iijima K, Kobayashi T, Kephart GM, McKenzie AN, Kita H.IL-33-responsive lineage-CD25+CD44hi lymphoid cells mediate innate type 2 immunity and allergic inflammation in the lungs. J Immunol. 2012;188(3):1503-13.
34. Moffatt MF, Gut IG, Demenais F, Strachan DP, Bouzigon E, Heath S, et al. A large-scale, consortium-based genomewide association study of asthma. N Engl J Med. 2010;363(13):1211-21.
35. Ramasamy A, Kuokkanen M, Vedantam S, Gajdos ZK, CoutoAlves A, Lyon HN, et al. Genome-wide association studies of asthma in population-based cohorts confirm known and suggested loci and identify an additional association near HLA. PLoS One. 2012;7(9):e44008.
36. Bonnelykke K, Sleiman P, Nielsen K, Kreiner-Moller E, Mercader JM, Belgrave D, et al. A genome-wide association study identifies CDHR3 as a susceptibility locus for early childhood asthma with severe exacerbations. Nat Genet. 2014;46(1):51-5.
IssueVol 20 No 6 (2021) QRcode
SectionOriginal Article(s)
DOI https://doi.org/10.18502/ijaai.v20i6.8018
Allergy and immunology Asthma Lung Vitamin A

Rights and permissions
Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
How to Cite
Feng L, Sun F, Chen Y, Athari SS, Chen X. Studying the Effects of Vitamin A on the Severity of Allergic Rhinitis and Asthma. Iran J Allergy Asthma Immunol. 2021;20(6):648-692.