Scand J Gastroenterol. 2003 Jul;38(7):742-6

Celiac.com 08/25/2003 – A recent study published in the July edition of the Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology demonstrates that avenin oat prolamines can be detected at higher levels in children with celiac disease compared to those without CD. The researchers prepared a crude avenin extract using an ethanol and salt solution, and used it as an antigen in a three step ELISA test. The blood of 81 children, including 34 with celiac disease, were analyzed for both IgA and IgG antibodies to avenin and gliadin. The researchers found that: Children with coeliac disease on a normal diet had significantly higher levels of antibodies to avenin, both IgG and IgA, than reference children (P < 0.001) and the levels correlated positively with gliadin antibodies, especially of IgA-type (r = 0.798). Both anti-avenin and anti-gliadin antibodies were only absorbed by the corresponding protein.

The researchers conclude: Children with coeliac disease have antibodies to oat proteins at significantly higher levels than reference children. The absorption test did not indicate a cross-reactivity between the prolamines of wheat and oats. The method will be employed for repeated sampling of anti-avenin antibodies during a prospective interventional study with a gluten-free diet supplemented with oats. An emphasis should be added to the last sentence, as it appears that they will now perform a study on celiac children who actually eat oats, and most other major studies of this type have shown no intestinal damage caused by the avenin oat prolamines in people with celiac disease. It is interesting that this study shows a different response to oats in those with celiac disease, but it remains to be seen if this response is actually harmful to celiacs.

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