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  • Hallie Davis
    Hallie Davis

    Celiac Disease and Paraproteinemia (Serum Monoclonal Proteins)

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Celiac.com 02/28/2008 - A study published in the Leukemia Research Journal (Volume 30, issue 12, Pages 1585-1586 - December 2006) looked at samples of serum from multiple myeloma patients. In 35% of the samples the myeloma monoclonal proteins had antigliadin activity, and migrated just like celiac anti-gliadin antibodies when subjected to electrophoresis. Monoclonal gammopathy (MGUS) is a precursor stage to multiple myeloma, with the same or very similar sort of monoclonal proteins as in multiple myeloma, and converts to it at the rate of about 1.5% per year. Therefore if one lives for 20 years after diagnosis with MGUS, one has a 30% chance of ending up with deadly, so far incurable, multiple myeloma, which is a cancer of the bone marrow and blood. For those diagnosed with MGUS it seems like a time bomb ticking, and each time one goes for the monitoring blood tests, there is some degree of anxiety. It was postulated by the researchers that multiple myeloma may actually be an end result of untreated celiac disease. This is why there has been a large reaction about this on the various MGUS web forums.Thirty-five percent is very high! At least one of our ChooseHope.com MGUS forum members was recently tested and found to have Celiac Disease and there are numerous other persons on the various MGUS forums alleging that they have this combination of conditions.

    In another publication from the database at PubMed.gov (Gut. 1976 Sep;17(9):735-9.), a study that showed that when a patient with MGUS and Celiac Disease was put on a gluten-free diet the monoclonal proteins entirely disappeared by the end of 3 years! Hence you can imagine what big news this is to all the MGUS patients, on the various online MGUS forums. Here is the suggestion that Celiacs might avoid becoming MGUS patients, that MGUS patients might perhaps avoid progression to multiple myeloma, and that multiple myeloma patients might have halted or slower progression of their disease, simply by being on a gluten-free diet! This is indeed big news!


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    The ramifications of this are that everyone with Celiac Disease really should undergo testing for MGUS/Myeloma which can be associated with various autoimmune diseases, increased rate of osteoporosis,  and neuropathy, or no symptoms at all! Likewise all MGUS patients should be tested for celiac disease, which again can be associated with various autoimmune diseases, increased rate of osteoporosis,  and neuropathy, or no symptoms at all! Do you see the similarities?

    I am currently working on a letter to Blue Cross Blue Shield,  informing them of the results of these studies and suggesting that their policy of reimbursing for celiac DNA testing of first degree relatives of known celiacs should be expanded to also include all persons having serum monoclonal proteins. This would include not just MGUS and multiple myeloma, but also Waldenstrom's macroglobulinemia.

    I would also like to call for intensified research on the link between celiac disease and paraproteinemia.


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    Found this interesting as an iridiology picture indicates that I am not digesting protein and that cells are surrounded by something and protein at least is not getting into cells. I also have a blob of something on one eye which seems to be causing changing readings from 20/25 - 20/60. Can this have to do with celiac disease which I have?

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    Hello.

    I receive the email updates. I found a lot of information in this article I did not understand, but with a bit of studying have made sense of it. Thank you for including it on your site.

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    Very interesting article. My mother has MGUS and recently I have begun to suspect she (and I) have gluten sensitivity based on other symptoms. This article adds more support to my efforts to get her to stay on a gluten-free diet.

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    This theory definitely sounds logical to me. I am a newly diagnosed Celiac who suspects there are many more celiacs in my large family. Specifically, I have an aunt who died of Multiple Myeloma and cousins with IBS. There is so much more to be learned about Celiac and autoimmune diseases.

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    I am a dermatitis herpetiformis and coeliac disease patient and I have had raised levels of gamma kappa paraproteins for some years now. I have a blood test about every 6 months and thankfully, nothing untoward has occurred. I have been on a strict gluten-free diet for the last 8 years but these paraproteins don't disappear. The doctors just tell me they are non-specific.

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    This is a very interesting article. I often search for genetic links, or th 'why I have celiac'. My father died of Leukemia at age 38. I was diagnosed with celiac at age 30, with osteoporosis at age 36. Now at 51 my osteoporosis is reversed, I'm healthy and enjoying life and FOOD. But I will be checked for MGUS.

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    Interesting article. I was diagnosed with celiac disease about 2 1/2 years ago, and with MGUS (IgG kappa) shortly after that. At that time, my endocrinologist (I'm osteoporotic) attributed the MGUS to the celiac. As to the disappearance of the paraprotein, my paraprotein levels have remained stable over the 2 1/2 years.

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    Very interesting. My father was diagnosed with MGUS approx 10 years ago and I was finally diagnosed with celiac disease 6/07 after having symptoms since childhood. Ironically, both of my parents were tested for celiac after my confirmed diagnosis and both their tissue antibodies came back negative. Definitely warrants some investigation.

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    I am a 55 year old woman who was diagnosed with MGUS by Dr. Durie at Cedar's Sinai Medical Center in 1995. My IGg numbers have been pretty constant since. When I went for my first colonoscopy screening last month I happened to mention to the doctor that I occasionally had bouts of IBS. He tested me for celiac disease but the results were neg. He did mention that because my IGa was low it might cause a false reading. Since I did not want to have any invasive procedures done I decided to try a gluten free diet. There has been a noticeable absence of intestinal pain. I was already anticipating my upcoming MGUS lab work in May, thinking there may be some correlation when I read this article. I would like to get in touch with the author of this article to update you further and compare notes. Thank you so much for validating my suspicions.

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    The info is interesting. However, I would temper the advice that every celiac get the MGUS testing. If there is nothing that medicine knows to do, why get the testing? It will only provide another medical record and 'diagnosis' used against the person when he or she seeks health insurance. Stay on a gluten-free diet and undertake other health-oriented nutritional therapy. I frankly don't believe that the diagnostic system used in conventional medicine is helpful in our quest to understand whole body dynamics.

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  • About Me

    I am a retired Doctor of Optometry after practicing for 20 years. I have monoclonal gammopathy (paraproteinemia), limited systemic scleroderma, Hashimoto's thyroiditis, obstructive sleep apnea, beginning neuropathy, and have just been found to have the celiac HLA type: DQ8.

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