Individual participant data (IPD)-level meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials among dark-skinned populations to estimate the dietary requirement for vitamin D

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Kevin D Cashman, Christian Ritz

Background: Estimation of the dietary requirements for vitamin D is crucial from a public health perspective in providing a framework for the prevention of vitamin D deficiency. It has been shown that pooling individual participant-level data (IPD) from selected randomised controlled trials (RCTs) of white children and adults facilitated the generation of more accurate estimates of the vitamin D requirement. Recent RCT data suggest the vitamin D requirement of dark-skinned, particularly black, individuals, an at-risk group of vitamin D deficiency, is greater than those of white counterparts. Thus, we wished to develop a study protocol for the conduct of an IPD-level meta-analysis of vitamin D requirements using data from appropriate vitamin D RCTs in dark-skinned population subgroups.

Methods: The study protocol details the steps needed within such an IPD meta-analysis which will include its registration, constituent systematic review to identify all appropriate RCTs on the basis of pre-specified eligibility criteria, the associated data collection, handling, and synthesis, as well as checking the integrity of the IPD, followed by implementation of a one/two-stage IPD meta-analysis and derivation of vitamin D requirement estimates.

Dicussion: As dark-skinned population subgroups are at increased risk of vitamin D deficiency, further investigation of dietary recommendations for vitamin D in these subgroups is needed. We strongly believe that application of an IPD-based meta-analysis is a highly strategic approach by which to undertake some of this further investigation. Such IPD-based analysis, however, will need collaboration across the principal investigators of the identified RCTs meeting with the eligibility criteria, and the availability of this study protocol will be important to highlight the potential of IPD-based analysis for estimation of the dietary requirement for vitamin D for this particular population subgroup as well as for other at-risk target populations.

Systematic review registration: PROSPERO International Prospective Register of Systematic Reviews (registration number: CRD42018092343).

Original languageEnglish
Article number128
JournalSystematic Reviews
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 2019

    Research areas

  • The Faculty of Science - Vitamin D requirements, Ethnic-related differences, Individual Participant Data-level meta-regression analyses, Dietary Reference Values, RCT

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