Menzies Weekly Seminar

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Presenter:  Dr Michael Binks

Date: Aug 21, 2018

Time: 11:00am to 11:30am

Contact person:  Menzies Communications Team
T: 8946 8658

Location:  Auditorium | John Mathews Building (Bldg 58), Royal Darwin Hospital Campus - available on WebEx

Target audience:  The Menzies seminars are free of charge and open to the general public.

Title: “Vitamin D supplementation to prevent acute respiratory infections in Indigenous babies: The D-kids study.”

Nationally, Indigenous infants continue to be hospitalised with acute respiratory infection (ARI) 2.5x as often as non-Indigenous infants. The gap is widest in the Northern Territory (NT) where ARIs remain a leading cause of hospitalisation and preventable death. Pragmatic strategies to prevent early childhood respiratory infections are essential.
Due to waning maternal vitamin D levels in late gestation, most NT Indigenous infants are born with suboptimal vitamin D levels. Vitamin D is necessary for optimal immune responses and we showed that Indigenous infants with lower vitamin D levels at birth have an increased risk of ARI. 
We are conducting a Northern Territory based, double-blind, randomised placebo-controlled trial to determine whether daily vitamin D supplementation during the third trimester of pregnancy and early infancy, a known high-risk period of deficiency, can reduce the risk of infant ARI during the first 12 months of life. We expect perinatal vitamin D supplementation to reduce infant ARIs by over 20%. The study will also investigate infant immune function, pathogen prevalence and heritable differences in vitamin D physiology. Vitamin D supplementation is a safe, simple and cost-effective intervention. For the NT and more broadly, this trial will validate the utility of vitamin D supplementation against infant ARI, guide best practice for vitamin D supplementation and provide much needed evidence on vitamin D reference ranges in pregnancy and infancy.

Biography: Michael a NHMRC early career fellow has been involved with Indigenous health research for over 14 years, read more here.

Next: Tuesday, 28 Augus
Bernard Leckning |
Exploring social and clinical risk profiles of self-harm hospital admissions by young people: A data linkage study”

  • The presentations will be 20 minutes with 10 minutes for questions.
  • Please feel free to forward this notice to your colleagues and associates
PDF icon Menzies Weekly Seminar - Dr Michael Binks