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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/24/2018

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What is Celiac Disease and the Gluten-Free Diet? What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes
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    CELIAC DISEASE: A FUTURE WITHOUT GLUTEN-FREE DIET?


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    Gastroenterology, Oct 2003, Vol 125, No 4, p1264-67

    Celiac.com 10/08/2003 - An article by Vader et al. published in the October 2003 edition of the journal Gastroenterology discusses recent insights into celiac disease pathogenesis, and the possibility of detoxifying gluten for celiacs. After describing the toxic process of gluten peptides in celiacs in some detail, Vader et al. examined the possibility of detoxifying gluten in the wheat kernel: "The effect of comparable substitutions in the immunodominant 9-gliadin epitope. One mutation, consisting in the substitution of a glutamine (residue) by a proline residue, decreased T cell recognition. Further: "Interestingly, given the similarities between the respective codons for glutamine and proline, this substitution was achieved by changing a single nucleotide at the DNA level. This mutation, resulting in an exchange between the 2 most frequent amino acids in prolamins, suggests that detoxification of gluten might be achievable by site-directed mutagenesis of wheat without affecting the unique baking properties of gluten." They go on by emphasizing that due to the complexity of the amino acid sequences found in wheat, achieving a detoxified wheat using this method would be difficult.

    Later in the article Shan et al. propose detoxifying gluten in the intestine of a celiac with "a peptidase therapy based on the use of a bacterial endoprolyl protease." Although this therapy has been tested as effective in rats, it has not yet been tested in humans. Further: "Using intestinal biopsies mounted in Using chambers, we have observed that several gliadin-derived peptides, including the 33 mer, can be efficiently degraded into amino acids during their epithelial transport and processing in control patients and in patients on a gluten-free diet, arguing against a major intrinsic intestinal defect of proteolysis of proline-rich peptides. The situation was different in patients with active disease in which a significant amount of peptide entered undigested into the mucosa. In the latter cases, however, it remains unclear whether entrance of the intact peptides was related only to altered epithelial processing or favored by a more active mechanism that remains to be elucidated." So this also may not be an effective way to detoxify gluten.

    Finally the article explores the possibility of treating the disease using vaccinotherapy which would be based on the central role of the adaptive antigluten T-cell response: "Senger et al. observed that intranasal administration of whole gliadin or of one of its isoforms could partially inhibit the systemic T-cell response to the parenteral challenge by whole gliadins in HLA-DQ8-transgenic mice." Further: "Using unmodified gluten, however, entails an important risk of enhancing immunization. An alternative strategy might be to develop peptide analogues able to interfere with HLA-class II binding and T-cell activation and to redirect the immune response toward tolerance. This approach has been successful in several experimental models of autoimmune diseases and has provided encouraging results in patients with multiple sclerosis." These type of therapies, however, run the risk of enhancing immunization instead of promoting tolerance.

    The article concludes in a hopeful tone: "Although the ultimate goal of producing wheat deprived of toxicity remains remote and perhaps inaccessible, our broadening knowledge of celiac disease pathogenesis offers a growing number of alternative strategies to the gluten-free diet. Much work, hopefully soon supported by the development of an accurate animal model, is needed to evaluate the feasibility, efficiency, and risks of these approaches. In the vast majority of cases, celiac disease is a benign disease. Its current treatment, although constraining, is safe and efficient, and the cost and benefits of any other treatment will require a thorough appraisal. Furthermore, one unresolved key issue is to simply define who deserves treatment. The wide clinical spectrum of the disease might reflect a wide level of individual sensitivity, some of which could be compatible with a normal diet. Epidemiologic studies providing a precise appraisal of the risk of complications are therefore needed to substantiate the need of a treatment in individuals with silent or pauci-symptomatic disease determined by serologic studies."


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    Dig Dis Sci 1999;44:2344-2349.
    Celiac.com 04/10/2000 - Dr. Carme Farre, of Hospital Sant Joan de Deu, in Barcelona, Spain, and his multi-center colleagues, report in the November issue of Digestive Diseases and Sciences that both serologic markers and the human lymphocyte antigen class II extended DQ2 (HLA-DQ2) haplotype are useful markers for screening first-degree relatives of patients with celiac disease for the disorder. These markers are more reliable predictors of celiac disease than other clinical features, which are absent from one third of relatives of people with celiac disease.
    The researchers examined the usefulness of serologic markers, HLA-DQ2 haplotype, and clinical features common to celiac disease in the diagnosis of the disorder in 675 first-degree relatives of celiac disease patients. The diagnosis was confirmed by intestinal biopsy. Their results showed that 5.5% of the subjects were diagnosed with celiac disease, which is significantly higher than what was observed in the general public in a previous study. Serum IgA-class anti-endomysium antibodies (IgA-AEA) and IgA-class anti-gliadin antibodies (IgA-AGA) were observed in 5.8% and 1.9% of the relatives, respectively.
    According to the researchers: Our results show that IgA-AEA is the most useful marker, since all but one IgA-AEA-positive relative showed histological findings of [celiac disease]. Further, the measurement of IgA-AGA would have missed 66% of the affected relatives. The researchers also concluded that the HLA-DQ2 haplotype also appeared to be a more useful indicator to determine which first-degree relatives had an increased genetic susceptibility to celiac disease, because the marker was detected in 93% of first-degree relatives found to have celiac disease, and 18% of those without it. The four most common clinical symptoms for celiac disease, diarrhea, anemia, food intolerance and growth retardation, were not found in one third of the relatives of patients with celiac disease.
    The researchers conclude: Although the definitive diagnosis of [celiac disease] relies upon the intestinal biopsy, it should be preceded by a noninvasive, inexpensive and easy-to-perform screening technique. Their findings indicate that using blood serum IgA-AEA measurements is a useful screening tool for noninvasive screening, and HLA-DQ2 assessment may delineate a very high risk population with a particular genetic susceptibility to [celiac disease].

    admin

    Celiac.com 11/08/2005 - Today a team of scientists at Alba Therapeutics Corporation (Alba) and the University of Maryland School of Medicine reported a direct link between gluten-induced intestinal permeability and zonulin in tissues from patients with celiac disease. The investigators were able to successfully prevent gluten-induced intestinal tissue leak with the administration of the zonulin antagonist FZI/0 (AT-1001). AT-1001 is an orally administered peptide currently under development for the treatment of celiac disease. Published in the November issue of the Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology, these results describe the role that leaky gut plays in celiac disease and the role that zonulin plays in establishing the leak. These results are another milestone towards understanding the role of zonulin in celiac disease, says Alessio Fasano, M.D., lead author of the paper, professor of pediatrics, medicine and physiology at the University of Maryland School of Medicine and director of its Center for Celiac Research.
    These results reinforce our conviction that AT-1001 has great therapeutic potential and we look forward to confirming these observations in celiac patients soon, stated Alba CEO Dr. Blake M. Paterson.
    About Zonulin
    Zonulin is a signaling protein that transiently and reversibly opens the tight junctions (tj) between the cells of epithelial and endothelial tissues such as the intestinal mucosa, blood brain barrier and pulmonary epithelia. Zonulin appears to be involved in many diseases in which leakage occurs via paracellular transport across epithelial and endothelial tight junctions (tj),
    and thus may play an important potential role in the treatment of autoimmune diseases.
    About Celiac Disease
    Celiac disease is a T-cell mediated auto-immune disease that occurs in genetically susceptible individuals and is characterized by small intestinal inflammation, injury and intolerance to gluten. According to the National Institutes of Health, celiac disease affects approximately 3 million Americans, although the diagnosis is rarely made. The only treatment for celiac disease is complete elimination of gluten from the diet, which results in remission for some patients.
    About Alba
    Alba Therapeutics Corporation is a privately held biopharmaceutical company based in Baltimore, Maryland. Alba is dedicated to commercializing disease-modifying therapeutics and drug delivery adjuvants based on the zonulin pathway. Albas lead molecule, AT-1001, is targeted towards the treatment of celiac disease and other auto-immune illnesses.
    Contact: Dr. Blake Paterson
    Alba Therapeutics Corporation
    (410) 522-8708

    Jefferson Adams

    Celiac.com 04/10/2007 - Patients suffering from refractory celiac disease with aberrant T cells seem to benefit from high-dose chemotherapy followed by autologous hematopoietic stem cell transplantation. Refractory celiac disease with aberrant T cells has generally proven resistant to known celiac therapies, and patients are at high risk for developing enteropathy associated T-cell lymphoma. The small pilot trial was conducted by Dr. Abdulbaqi Al-toma and colleagues from VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam.
    The study followed seven patients whose mean average age was 52.5 years old at the time of the procedure, and followed them for an average of 15.5 months (the lowest follow-up time was 7 months, the longest was 30 months). According to the study, there was no transplantation-related mortality, and only mild cases of transplantation-related toxicity. A one-month post-procedure follow-up showed remarkable clinical improvement all patients, including disappearance of abdominal pain, normalization of stool frequency, and improvement of biochemical markers.
    The research team also noted that post-transplant histology of the small intestine revealed marked regeneration coupled with a disappearance of erosions and ulcerations. Furthermore, at 3 to 4 months, post-transplantation tests showed a decline in aberrant T cells from a mean of 63% at baseline to 38%. Additionally, at 2 years, tests for the first hematopoietic stem cell transplant patient showed continuing declines in aberrant T cells (to 3%).
    It should be noted that one subject of the study showed no declines in aberrant T cell percentages, histology examination or CD8+ cells, and that the patient died 8 months after the stem-cell transplant.
    The research team concluded that the promising short-term results enjoyed by this small test group warrants a longer-term follow-up to properly assess the significance of the findings.
    Blood 2007;109:2243-2249.
    health writer who lives in San Francisco and is a frequent author of articles for Celiac.com.

    Jefferson Adams

    Celiac.com 09/10/2007 - Nuvelo has announced Phase 1 trials of NU206 (R-spondin1) gastrointestinal growth factor product on cancer patients who are receiving radiation or chemotherapy treatment for cancer.
    NU206 is a recombinant, secreted protein that early animal studies show to act as a highly specific stimulator of the gastrointestinal (GI) epithelial cells. Preclinical studies suggest NU206 promotes growth and regeneration of gastrointestinal tissues in animal models of radiation and chemotherapy treatment for cancer, as well as in animal models of inflammatory bowel disease and short bowel syndrome. They expect to follow shortly thereafter with trials on patients with IBD.
    Mice deficient in IL-10 with drug-inducted colitis serve as research models for human IBD. Studies on such mice show that R-spondin1 substantially prevents mucosal damage and restored mucosal integrity.
    The implications for repairing and preventing mucosal damage in celiac disease are obvious. In addition to restoring other normal mucosal functions, rapid mucosal repair in celiacs through the use of NU206 therapy would provide relief from the problems caused by increased intestinal permeability.
    Gastroenterology. 2007 April; 132(4) pgs 1331-1343
    health writer who lives in San Francisco and is a frequent author of articles for Celiac.com.

  • Recent Articles

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/26/2018 - Emily Dickson is one of Canada’s top athletes. As a world-class competitor in the biathlon, the event that combines cross-country skiing with shooting marksmanship, Emily Dickson was familiar with a demanding routine of training and competition. After discovering she had celiac disease, Dickson is using her diagnosis and gluten-free diet a fuel to help her get her mojo back.
    Just a few years ago, Dickson dominated her peers nationally and won a gold medal at Canada Games for both pursuit and team relay. She also won silver in the sprint and bronze in the individual race. But just as she was set to reach her peak, Dickson found herself in an agonizing battle. She was suffering a mysterious loss of strength and endurance, which itself caused huge anxiety for Dickson. As a result of these physical and mental pressures, Dickson slipped from her perch as one of Canada's most promising young biathletes.
    Eventually, in September 2016, she was diagnosed with celiac disease. Before the diagnosis, Dickson said, she had “a lot of fatigue, I just felt tired in training all the time and I wasn't responding to my training and I wasn't recovering well and I had a few things going on, but nothing that pointed to celiac.”
    It took a little over a year for Dickson to eliminate gluten, and begin to heal her body. She still hasn’t fully recovered, which makes competing more of a challenge, but, she says improving steadily, and expects to be fully recovered in the next few months. Dickson’s diagnosis was prompted when her older sister Kate tested positive for celiac, which carries a hereditary component. "Once we figured out it was celiac and we looked at all the symptoms it all made sense,” said Dickson.
    Dickson’s own positive test proved to be both a revelation and a catalyst for her own goals as an athlete. Armed with there new diagnosis, a gluten-free diet, and a body that is steadily healing, Dickson is looking to reap the benefits of improved strength, recovery and endurance to ramp up her training and competition results.
    Keep your eyes open for the 20-year-old native of Burns Lake, British Columbia. Next season, she will be competing internationally, making a big jump to the senior ranks, and hopefully a regular next on the IBU Cup tour.
    Read more at princegeorgecitizen.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/25/2018 - A team of Yale University researchers discovered that bacteria in the small intestine can travel to other organs and trigger an autoimmune response. In this case, they looked at Enterococcus gallinarum, which can travel beyond the gut to the spleen, lymph nodes, and liver. The research could be helpful for treating type 1 diabetes, lupus, and celiac disease.
    In autoimmune diseases, such as type 1 diabetes, lupus, and celiac disease, the body’s immune system mistakenly attacks healthy cells and tissues. Autoimmune disease affects nearly 24 million people in the United States. 
    In their study, a team of Yale University researchers discovered that bacteria in the small intestine can travel to other organs and trigger an autoimmune response. In this case, they looked at Enterococcus gallinarum, which can travel beyond the gut to the spleen, lymph nodes, and liver. They found that E. gallinarum triggered an autoimmune response in the mice when it traveled beyond the gut.
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    This study indicates that gut bacteria may be the key to treating chronic autoimmune conditions such as systemic lupus and autoimmune liver disease. Numerous autoimmune conditions have been linked to gut bacteria.
    Read the full study in Science.

    Tammy Rhodes
    Celiac.com 04/24/2018 - Did you know in 2017 alone, the United States had OVER TENS OF THOUSANDS of people evacuate their homes due to natural disasters such as fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and tsunamis? Most evacuation sites are not equipped to feed your family the safe gluten free foods that are required to stay healthy.  Are you prepared in case of an emergency? Do you have your Gluten Free Emergency Food Bag ready to grab and go?  
    I have already lived through two natural disasters. Neither of which I ever want to experience again, but they taught me a very valuable lesson, which is why I created a Gluten Free Emergency Food Bag (see link below). Here’s my story. If you’ve ever lived in or visited the Los Angeles area, you’re probably familiar with the Santa Ana winds and how bitter sweet they are. Sweet for cleaning the air and leaving the skies a brilliant crystal blue, and bitter for the power outages and potential brush fires that might ensue.  It was one of those bitter nights where the Santa Ana winds were howling, and we had subsequently lost our power. We had to drive over an hour just to find a restaurant so we could eat dinner. I remember vividly seeing the glow of a brush fire on the upper hillside of the San Gabriel Mountains, a good distance from our neighborhood. I really didn’t think much of it, given that it seemed so far from where we lived, and I was hungry! After we ate, we headed back home to a very dark house and called it a night. 
    That’s where the story takes a dangerous turn….about 3:15am. I awoke to the TV blaring loudly, along with the lights shining brightly. Our power was back on! I proceeded to walk throughout the house turning everything off at exactly the same time our neighbor, who was told to evacuate our street, saw me through our window, assuming I knew that our hillside was ablaze with flames. Flames that were shooting 50 feet into the air. I went back to bed and fell fast asleep. The fire department was assured we had left because our house was dark and quiet again. Two hours had passed.  I suddenly awoke to screams coming from a family member yelling, “fire, fire, fire”! Flames were shooting straight up into the sky, just blocks from our house. We lived on a private drive with only one way in and one way out.  The entrance to our street was full of smoke and the fire fighters were doing their best to save our neighbors homes. We literally had enough time to grab our dogs, pile into the car, and speed to safety. As we were coming down our street, fire trucks passed us with sirens blaring, and I wondered if I would ever see my house and our possessions ever again. Where do we go? Who do we turn to? Are shelters a safe option? 
    When our daughter was almost three years old, we left the West Coast and relocated to Northern Illinois. A place where severe weather is a common occurrence. Since the age of two, I noticed that my daughter appeared gaunt, had an incredibly distended belly, along with gas, stomach pain, low weight, slow growth, unusual looking stool, and a dislike for pizza, hotdog buns, crackers, Toast, etc. The phone call from our doctor overwhelmed me.  She was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. I broke down into tears sobbing. What am I going to feed my child? Gluten is everywhere.
    After being scoped at Children's Hospital of Chicago, and my daughters Celiac Disease officially confirmed, I worried about her getting all the nutrients her under nourished body so desperately needed. I already knew she had a peanut allergy from blood tests, but just assumed she would be safe with other nuts. I was so horribly wrong. After feeding her a small bite of a pistachio, which she immediately spit out, nuts would become her enemy. Her anaphylactic reaction came within minutes of taking a bite of that pistachio. She was complaining of horrible stomach cramps when the vomiting set in. She then went limp and starting welting. We called 911.
    Now we never leave home without our Epipens and our gluten free food supplies. We analyze every food label. We are hyper vigilant about cross contamination. We are constantly looking for welts and praying for no stomach pain. We are always prepared and on guard. It's just what we do now. Anything to protect our child, our love...like so many other parents out there have to do every moment of ever day!  
    Then, my second brush with a natural disaster happened, without any notice, leaving us once again scrambling to find a safe place to shelter. It was a warm and muggy summer morning, and my husband was away on a business trip leaving my young daughter and me to enjoy our summer day. Our Severe Weather Alert Radio was going off, again, as I continued getting our daughter ready for gymnastics.  Having gotten used to the (what seemed to be daily) “Severe Thunderstorm warning,” I didn’t pay much attention to it. I continued downstairs with my daughter and our dog, when I caught a glimpse out the window of an incredibly black looking cloud. By the time I got downstairs, I saw the cover to our grill literally shoot straight up into the air. Because we didn’t have a fenced in yard, I quickly ran outside and chased the cover, when subsequently, I saw my neighbor’s lawn furniture blow pass me. I quickly realized I made a big mistake going outside. As I ran back inside, I heard debris hitting the front of our home.  Our dog was the first one to the basement door! As we sat huddled in the dark corner of our basement, I was once again thinking where are we going to go if our house is destroyed. I was not prepared, and I should have been. I should have learned my lesson the first time. Once the storm passed, we quickly realized we were without power and most of our trees were destroyed. We were lucky that our house had minimal damage, but that wasn’t true for most of the area surrounding us.  We were without power for five days. We lost most of our food - our gluten free food.
    That is when I knew we had to be prepared. No more winging it. We couldn’t take a chance like that ever again. We were “lucky” one too many times. We were very fortunate that we did not lose our home to the Los Angeles wildfire, and only had minimal damage from the severe storm which hit our home in Illinois.
      
    In 2017 alone, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) had 137 natural disasters declared within the United States. According to FEMA, around 50% of the United States population isn’t prepared for a natural disaster. These disasters can happen anywhere, anytime and some without notice. It’s hard enough being a parent, let alone being a parent of a gluten free family member. Now, add a natural disaster on top of that. Are you prepared?
    You can find my Gluten Free Emergency Food Bags and other useful products at www.allergynavigator.com.  

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/23/2018 - A team of researchers recently set out to learn whether celiac disease patients commonly suffer cognitive impairment at the time they are diagnosed, and to compare their cognitive performance with non-celiac subjects with similar chronic symptoms and to a group of healthy control subjects.
    The research team included G Longarini, P Richly, MP Temprano, AF Costa, H Vázquez, ML Moreno, S Niveloni, P López, E Smecuol, R Mazure, A González, E Mauriño, and JC Bai. They are variously associated with the Small Bowel Section, Department of Medicine, Dr. C. Bonorino Udaondo Gastroenterology Hospital; Neurocience Cognitive and Traslational Institute (INECO), Favaloro Fundation, CONICET, Buenos Aires; the Brain Health Center (CESAL), Quilmes, Argentina; the Research Council, MSAL, CABA; and with the Research Institute, School of Medicine, Universidad del Salvador.
    The team enrolled fifty adults with symptoms and indications of celiac disease in a prospective cohort without regard to the final diagnosis.  At baseline, all individuals underwent cognitive functional and psychological evaluation. The team then compared celiac disease patients with subjects without celiac disease, and with healthy controls matched by sex, age, and education.
    Celiac disease patients had similar cognitive performance and anxiety, but no significant differences in depression scores compared with disease controls.
    A total of thirty-three subjects were diagnosed with celiac disease. Compared with the 26 healthy control subjects, the 17 celiac disease subjects, and the 17 disease control subjects, who mostly had irritable bowel syndrome, showed impaired cognitive performance (P=0.02 and P=0.04, respectively), functional impairment (P<0.01), and higher depression (P<0.01). 
    From their data, the team noted that any abnormal cognitive functions they saw in adults with newly diagnosed celiac disease did not seem not to be a result of the disease itself. 
    Their results indicate that cognitive dysfunction in celiac patients could be related to long-term symptoms from chronic disease, in general.
    Source:
    J Clin Gastroenterol. 2018 Mar 1. doi: 10.1097/MCG.0000000000001018.

    Connie Sarros
    Celiac.com 04/21/2018 - Dear Friends and Readers,
    I have been writing articles for Scott Adams since the 2002 Summer Issue of the Scott-Free Press. The Scott-Free Press evolved into the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. I felt honored when Scott asked me ten years ago to contribute to his quarterly journal and it's been a privilege to write articles for his publication ever since.
    Due to personal health reasons and restrictions, I find that I need to retire. My husband and I can no longer travel the country speaking at conferences and to support groups (which we dearly loved to do) nor can I commit to writing more books, articles, or menus. Consequently, I will no longer be contributing articles to the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. 
    My following books will still be available at Amazon.com:
    Gluten-free Cooking for Dummies Student's Vegetarian Cookbook for Dummies Wheat-free Gluten-free Dessert Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Reduced Calorie Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Cookbook for Kids and Busy Adults (revised version) My first book was published in 1996. My journey since then has been incredible. I have met so many in the celiac community and I feel blessed to be able to call you friends. Many of you have told me that I helped to change your life – let me assure you that your kind words, your phone calls, your thoughtful notes, and your feedback throughout the years have had a vital impact on my life, too. Thank you for all of your support through these years.