Myosin IXB Gene Linked to Intestinal Barrier Defect and Celiac Disease Risk
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.
Nat Genet. 2005 Nov 13
Celiac.com 11/29/2005 - The following is an abstract of a study by Dutch researchers which demonstrates a new level of understanding with regard to the role that specific genes play in the cause of celiac disease. These findings may eventually lead to a treatment that lies beyond the gluten-free diet:
Celiac disease is probably the best-understood immune-related disorder. The disease presents in the small intestine and results from the interplay between multiple genes and gluten, the triggering environmental factor. Although HLA class II genes explain 40% of the heritable risk, non-HLA genes accounting for most of the familial clustering have not yet been identified. Here we report significant and replicable association (P = 2.1 x 10(-6)) to a common variant located in intron 28 of the gene myosin IXB (MYO9B), which encodes an unconventional myosin molecule that has a role in actin remodeling of epithelial enterocytes. Individuals homozygous with respect to the at-risk allele have a 2.3-times higher risk of celiac disease (P = 1.55 x 10(-5)). This result is suggestive of a primary impairment of the intestinal barrier in the etiology of celiac disease, which may explain why immunogenic gluten peptides are able to pass through the epithelial barrier.
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