Celiac.com 04/20/2008 - ActoGeniX is a recently formed Belgian company specializing in the development and use of genetically altered probiotic Lactococcus lactis bacteria designed to secrete and deliver therapeutic peptides and proteins to treat gastrointestinal disorders. Their product is called ActoBiotics™. Celiac disease is among the disorders ActoGeniX is currently investigating. Research has already shown efficacy in a celiac disease model where ActoBiotics™ continuously secrete small segments of gluten peptides to induce tolerance to gluten. Further research and trials are in the pipeline.
Shortly after the release of a recent paper by Italian researchers demonstrating that a peptide from durum wheat is able to completely suppress the immune response to gluten in a culture of celiac disease intestinal T cells (see Durum Wheat Peptide Could Lead To Celiac Disease Treatment ), I contacted ActoGeniX to suggest they work with the Italian researchers to create an ActoBiotic™ designed to continuously secrete the durum wheat peptide as a therapy for celiac disease. ActoGeniX replied and was very interested in the durum wheat peptide, indicating it was possible for them to produce an ActoBiotic™ to secrete the durum wheat peptide and they would contact the Italian group. I also attempted to contact the Italian researchers to inform them about ActoGeniX, but they did not reply. I strongly believe that a collaboration between these two groups would result in the speediest and most successful development of a treatment which could effectively "cure" celiac disease through continuous secretion of the durum wheat peptide by genetically modified probiotic bacteria in the gut.
Technical information describing their product and initial research and development in detail is presented in the following patent application: http://www.freepatentsonline.com/WO2007063075.html.