Vitamin D toxicity: initial site and mode of action

W. M. Haschek, L. Krook, F. A. Kallfelz, W. G. Pond

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Two groups of weanling pigs, injected with 45Ca, were fed diets containing optimal calcium and phosphorus, and vitamin D3 at 1320 IU/kg feed in the control group, and 825,000 IU/kg feed in the test group. The groups were further subdivided with 2 pigs in each subgroup, with survival times of 1, 2, 3, 4, 7 and 14 days. Pigs fed the high level of vitamin D3 lost weight and anorexia, weakness, rough hair coat and labored breathing were observed. Hypercalcemia began at 12 hours and progressed rapidly after 2 days. Radioisotope studies interpreted in the light of histopathologic findings indicated that bone was the primary source of increased plasma calcium. Calcium was released at a rapid rate into blood from prelabeled bone which was undergoing necrosis; it was also removed from blood and deposited into bone at a slower rate due to decreased apposition.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)324-364
Number of pages41
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1978
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Medicine


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