Investigating the influence of vitamin D status on cognitive and motor development in young African children


  • Agnes Mutua

    KEMRI-Wellcome Trust Research Programme

Project summary

The way children’s brains develop is affected by nutritional deficiencies. Vitamin D deficiency affects African children despite the availability of sunshine. However, evidence for the effects of vitamin D levels on child development remains conflicting and there is only a single study in African children. 
I will carry out a study among 1,583 children in Africa to determine if vitamin D levels influence their development. I will match vitamin D measurements with the children’s developmental scores to determine the relationship between the two. I will use genetic variants that affect vitamin D levels to find out whether low vitamin D levels might cause poor development among the children. 

The information from this study will inform the design of programmes to prevent vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency in children in Africa.

This grant was awarded under the scheme’s previous name of Master’s Fellowship in Public Health and Tropical Medicine.