..1α,25-dihydroxyvitamin D3 signals via the Vitamin D Receptor (VDR). Higher serum vitamin D is associated with thinner primary melanoma and better outcome, although a causal mechanism has not been established.
As melanoma patients commonly avoid sun exposure, and consequent vitamin D deficiency might worsen outcomes, we interrogated 703 primary melanoma transcriptomes to understand the role of vitamin D-VDR signalling and replicated the findings in TCGA metastases. VDR expression was independently protective for melanoma death in both primary and metastatic disease.
..Vitamin D deficiency (< 25 nmol/l ~ 10 ng/ml) shortened survival in primary melanoma in a VDR-dependent manner.
.. In summary, vitamin D-VDR signaling contributes to controlling pro-proliferative/immunosuppresive Wnt/beta-catenin signaling in melanoma and this is associated with less metastatic disease and stronger host immune responses. This is evidence of the causal relationship between vitamin D-VDR signaling and melanoma survival which should be explored as a therapeutic target in primary resistance to checkpoint blockade.