In a large prospective study of 332 children presenting to Canadian healthcare facilities with an episode of demyelination, researchers at the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children confirmed the previously described strong associations with genetic predisposition, low vitamin D status and previous Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV) infection.

Of note, they showed that as well as the increased risk of the particular genetic make up of having one or more HLA-DRB1*15 alleles (a little over double the risk), for every 10nmol/L lower the vitamin D level, there was an 11% increase in risk of going on to develop MS.

This strongly reinforces previous data suggesting the value of supplementing at risk children with vitamin D, and ensuring their vitamin D levels remain high year round.