Research project

StudioCommissionato_IANNOTTI_UNILAVAL_Investigation into the effects of vitamin D on antipsychotic drug metabolic side effects: focus on the gut microbiome (DCM.AD007.119)

Thematic area

Chemical sciences and materials technology

Project area

Chimica e materiali per la salute e le scienze della vita (DCM.AD007)

Structure responsible for the research project

Institute of biomolecular chemistry (ICB)

Project manager

Phone number: 0818675303


Northern populations have an increased incidence of vitamin D deficiency and use of antipsychotic drugs. Both vitamin D status, mental health disorders and subsequent use of antipsychotic drugs are associated with alterations in the gut microbiome: commensal microbes that are critical to several aspects of health, especially metabolic health. Gut microbiome alterations associated with vitamin D deficiency and antipsychotic drug use correlate with the development of aspects of metabolic syndrome such as weight gain and glucose and lipid dysregulation. However, how pre-existing perturbations of the gut microbiome, such as those associated with vitamin D deficiency, modulates the onset/severity of antipsychotic drug metabolic side effects is not known. Further, vitamin D supplementation seems to mitigate these side effects, though the role of the gut microbiome in this remains to be determined. We will examine the effects of vitamin D status (deficiency or supplementation) and antipsychotic drug exposure on the gut microbiome and the development of metabolic perturbations in a rodent model with the eventual aim of developing microbiome-based regimens


We aim at investigating whether a combination of vitamin D deficiency and antipsychotic drug exposure produces profound perturbations in the composition of the gut microbiota, and if it increases susceptibility to adverse metabolic effects of antipsychotics (weight gain, dyslipidemia and insulin resistance). We will also explore the possibility of targeting the gut microbiota through Vitamin D supplementation as a way to curb the side effects of antipsychotic drugs.

Start date of activity



antipsicotici, vitamina D, microbioma

Last update: 14/07/2024