In 1994 I was diagnosed with celiac disease, which led me to create Celiac.com in 1995. I created this site for a single purpose: To help as many people as possible with celiac disease get diagnosed so they can begin to live happy, healthy gluten-free lives. Celiac.com was the first site on the Internet dedicated solely to celiac disease, and since then it has become an invaluable resource to people worldwide who seek information about celiac disease and the gluten-free diet.
In 1998 I created The Gluten-Free Mall, Your Special Diet Superstore! which was also another Internet first—it was the first gluten-free food site to offer a shopping cart-style interface, and the ability for people to order gluten-free products manufactured by many different companies at a single Web site.
I am also co-author of the book Cereal Killers, and founder and publisher of Journal of Gluten Sensitivity.
The following is an abstract of an article which was recently published in Clinical and Diagnostic Immunology (1996; 3:143-146), and was sent to me by Kevin Lawson. If you have any questions about it you can e-mail him at: IMMTEST@AOL.COM
Vijay Kumar (1,2), J.E. Valeski (1,2) and Jacobo Wortsman (3)
IMMCO Diagnostics, Inc.,1 Departments of Microbiology and Dermatology, State University of New York at Buffalo,2 Buffalo, New York, and Department of Internal Medicine, School of Medicine, Southern Illinois University, Springfield, Illinois. Celiac disease (CD) is a gluten-sensitive enteropathy characterized by the presence of serum antibodies to endomysial reticulin and gliadin antigens. celiac disease has been associated with various autoimmune endocrine disorders, such as diabetes. We report a rare case of idiopathic hypoparathyroidism with coexistent celiac disease characterized by the presence of serum autoantibodies.
Studies were conducted to determine the specificities of these autoantibodies and to localize the antibody binding sites by indirect immunofluorescence and immunoelectron microscopy.
Sera from a patient with idiopathic hypoparathyroidism and celiac disease and from two patients with celiac disease alone were tested by indirect immunofluorescence for autoantibodies to parathyroid and endomysial antigens. The specificities of the antibody reactions were determined by testing the sera before and after absorption with monkey stomach tissue. In addition, immunoelectron microscopic studies were performed to determine the localization of the endomysial antigen.
Indirect-immunofluorescence studies on the patients serum were positive with a parathyroid as well as the endomysial substrate. Similar reactions were also observed with the sera of endomysial antibody-positive patients with CD. Absorption of the sera with monkey stomach powder, which is known to have the endomysial antigen, abolished the antibody activities on both the endomysial substrate and the parathyroid tissue. Immunoelectron microscopic studies showed that endomysial antibody activity was associated with antigens localized on the myocyte plasma membrane and in the intercellular spaces. Thus, reactions of the patient s serum with the parathyroid tissue were due to endomysial antibodies and were not parathyroid specific as in patients with idiopathic hypoparathyroidism who did not have coexistent CD.
In conclusion, indirect-immunofluorescence tests on parathyroid tissue detect not only tissue-specific antibodies but also cross-reactive antibodies, and this should be taken into consideration when these tests are performed.