Vitamin D measurements - Robyn Lucas, Cindy Black, Michael Clark
Developing a protocol and assay to measure 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations in saliva
Funded by Telethon Kids Institute Working Group Project Funding
Black LJ, Gorman S, Hart P, Lucas R, Siafarikas A, Clarke M, Palmer D, Jones A
Currently, paediatric data for the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in a representative sample of the Australian population are not available. This is largely because venepuncture is often considered invasive, painful and an unnecessary burden for healthy children. However, childhood may be a critical time to maintain optimal vitamin D status, both for bone health and for non-skeletal conditions, including asthma, allergy, cardiometabolic health and cognitive function. This project aims to develop a protocol and assay to measure 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) concentrations in saliva for the assessment of vitamin D status, while maintaining precision and accuracy compared to measuring 25(OH)D concentrations in serum samples. This would provide an easy and painless way to assess vitamin D status in children in population studies, to diagnose vitamin D deficiency in paediatric patients without taking blood, and to regularly monitor vitamin D status during treatment of vitamin D deficiency.
Knowing our skin type and how it responds to sun exposure is essential for getting the right balance of sun exposure for optimal health. But, skin type varies enormously, and the current methods that classify skin type are sub-optimal. This project is all about testing the accuracy of mobile phone photography against other scientifically-valided methods to measure skin type. Using your mobile to photograph your skin could be a simple method to accurately assess sun-relevant skin type, which is easily accessible to individuals in the community and will be a major advance in evidence-based decisions for optimal sun exposure. This project was run over the Telethon Weekend (2015) at the Perth Convention Centre and collected data from more than 150 participants.