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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/07/2018

      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 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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    T-BET AND PSTAT-1 EXPRESSION AS NEW MARKERS OF CELIAC DISEASE ACTIVITY


    Jefferson Adams

    Celiac.com 10/28/2009 - Celiac disease is a T cell-mediated autoimmune disease, and a number of clinicians have described up-regulation of T-bet and phosphorylated signal transducers and activators of transcription (pSTAT)1, both of which are key transcription factors for the development of T helper type 1 (Th1) cells, in the mucosa of patients with untreated celiac disease.


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    A team of researchers recently used transcription factor analysis to examine whether celiac patients up-regulate T-bet and pSTAT1 expressions in peripheral blood
    and whether such up-regulation may be associated with celiac disease activity.

    The research team was made up of G. Frisullo, V. Nociti, R. Iorio, A. K. Patanella, D. Plantone, A. Bianco, A. Marti, G. Cammarota, P. A.  Tonali, and A. P. Batocchi of the Department of Neurosciences at the Catholic University in Rome, Italy.

    The team used flow cytometry to analyze T-bet, pSTAT1 and pSTAT3 expression in CD4(+), CD8(+) T cells, CD19(+) B cells and monocytes from peripheral blood of 15 untreated and 15 treated celiac disease patients and 30 controls, and longitudinally in five celiac patients before and after dietary treatment.

    The team measured the results using enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), interferon (FN)-gamma, interleukin (IL)-17 and IL-10 production by peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) cultures.

    Patients with untreated celiac disease showed higher T-bet expression in CD4(+), CD8(+) T cells, CD19(+) B cells and monocytes and IFN-gamma production by PBMC, than either treated celiac patients or control subjects.

    CD4(+)T cells, B cells and monocytes from untreated celiac patients showed higher pSTAT1 expression than either treated celiac patients or controls. Only in monocytes from untreated patients showed increased pSTAT3 compared with treated celiac patients and controls. Data from longitudinal evaluation of transcription factors corroborated these findings.

    Flow cytometric analysis of pSTAT1 and T-bet protein expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells could be useful and sensible markers in the follow-up of celiac disease patients to evaluate disease activity and response to dietary treatment.

    Being able to spot celiac disease early is key to achieving optimal outcomes for celiac patients. The development of simple, reliable, low-cost tests is key to that effort. Stay tuned for more developments regarding celiac disease testing, screening and diagnosis.

    Source:
    Clinical & Experimental Immunology, Volume 158 Issue 1, Pages 106 - 114


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    Guest diane dizayee

    Posted

    In a video on celiac disease, the Dr. used "xonolin " to inhibit the absorption of gluten and yet allow vital nutrients into the cells. What are your comments on that?

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    In a video on celiac disease, the Dr. used "xonolin " to inhibit the absorption of gluten and yet allow vital nutrients into the cells. What are your comments on that?

    "xonolin" is a made-up word. 'Nuff said.

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    Guest Jefferson Adams

    Posted

    Tara:

    I'm guessing 'xonolin' is a typo for 'Zonulin.' Zonulin is the molecule that helps form tight junctions between

    cells in the gut (and other places like skin). The tight junctions form a barrier between gut contents and the body. If the tight junctions are damaged (as happens in inflammation), the body is exposed to the gut contents.

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    Dr. Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

    This article appeared in the Autumn 2005 edition of Celiac.coms Scott-Free Newsletter.
    Celiac.com 01/11/2006 - There is an abundance of stories about people who begin a gluten-free diet, find that they feel better then decide they want a firm diagnosis of celiac disease. They are facing several problems. First, they may be gluten sensitive without the intestinal lesion of celiac disease. This is very likely since about twelve percent of the population is gluten sensitive, but only a little more than one percent of the general population has celiac disease. Another problem faced by gluten-free individuals who want a diagnosis is that it can take more than five years after returning to a regular gluten-containing diet before the characteristic damage of celiac disease can be seen on a biopsy1. Simply put, after beginning a gluten-free diet, only a positive biopsy is meaningful. A negative biopsy does not rule out celiac disease.
    A variety of opinions have been offered regarding how much gluten, for how long, should result in a definitive biopsy. The reality is that no such recommendation is consistent with the medical literature1-4. Some people with celiac disease will experience a return of intestinal damage within a few weeks of consuming relatively small amounts of gluten. Such brief challenges are valuable for these individuals. However, many people with celiac disease or dermatitis herpetiformis will require much larger doses of gluten, over much longer periods, to induce characteristic lesions on the intestinal wall. Unfortunately for these latter individuals, a negative biopsy after a brief gluten challenge can, and often is, misinterpreted as having ruled out celiac disease. Blood tests can compound this problem. If, as seems likely, celiac patients who are slow to relapse are also the ones who develop milder intestinal lesions, they are the very celiac patients for whom blood tests are very unreliable5. Claims to have ruled out celiac disease based on brief challenges with small quantities of gluten is a mistake that could lead to serious, even deadly, consequences.
    We may forget that gluten consumption by a person with celiac disease can lead to deadly cancers and a variety of debilitating autoimmune diseases. Any recommendation of a gluten challenge should be accompanied by a clear warning that the process may overlook many cases of celiac disease. The absence of such warnings is inexcusable.
    And what about non-celiac gluten sensitivity? The absence of an intestinal lesion does not rule out gluten induced damage to other tissues, organs, and systems. Evidence and research-based information in this area is sadly lacking but we do know that undigested or partly digested gliadin can damage a wide range of human cells6. Thus, one need only be consuming gluten and experience increased intestinal permeability for gluten-induced damage to be a factor in an almost infinite number of ailments.
    There are several partial answers to this problem. One, which Ive raised before, is to employ Dr. Michael N. Marshs rectal challenge for the diagnosis of celiac disease, particularly when the individual has already begun a gluten-free diet. This test permits a definitive diagnosis of celiac disease for up to six months after beginning a gluten-free diet. That would catch a great number of celiac patients who have found relief through a gluten-free diet and now want a diagnosis. Another piece of this puzzle is to test for IgG anti-gliadin antibodies. Although these antibodies are considered "non-specific," they inarguably identify an immune response to one of the most common foods in a regular North American diet. Although these individuals may experience improved wellness on a gluten-free diet, we just dont know enough about non-celiac gluten sensitivity to do more than recommend that they continue on this diet since it makes them feel better.
    Ron Hoggan is an author, teacher and diagnosed celiac who lives in Canada. His book "Dangerous Grains" can be ordered at Celiac.com. Rons Web page is: www.DangerousGrains.com.
    References:
    Kuitunen P, Savilahti E, Verkasalo M. Late mucosalrelapse in a boy with coeliac disease and cows milk allergy.Acta Paediatr Scand.1986 Mar;75(2):340-2. Bardella MT, Fredella C, Trovato C, Ermacora E, Cavalli R, Saladino V, Prampolini L. Long-term remission in patients with dermatitis herpetiformis on a normal diet. Br. J. Dermatol. 2003 Nov;149(5):968-71. Shmerling DH, Franckx J. Childhood celiac disease: a long-term analysis of relapses in 91 patients.J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1986 Jul-Aug;5(4):565-9. Chartrand LJ, Seidman EG. Celiac disease is a lifelong disorder. Clin Invest Med. 1996 Oct;19(5):357-61. Rostami K, Kerckhaert J, von Blomberg BM, Meijer JW, Wahab P, Mulder CJ. SAT and serology in adult coeliacs, seronegative coeliac disease seems a reality.Neth J Med. 1998 Jul;53(1):15-9. Hudson DA, Cornell HJ, Purdham DR, Rolles CJ. Non-specific cytotoxicity of wheat gliadin components towards cultured human cells.Lancet. 1976 Feb 14;1(7955):339-41.

    admin
    Celiac.com 09/28/2007 - Celiac disease is one of the most common lifelong disorders in western countries. However, most cases in North America remain currently undiagnosed, mostly because they present unusual symptoms and because of the low number of doctors who have a sound awareness of celiac disease.
    In a large European survey, the ratio between diagnosed and undiagnosed cases, found by mass serological screening, was as high as 1 to 7 , an effect termed the ‘celiac iceberg’. In addition to having chronic symptoms that might otherwise respond to a gluten-free diet, undiagnosed patients are exposed to the risk of long-term complications of celiac disease, such as anemia, infertility, osteoporosis, or cancer, particularly an intestinal lymphoma.
    Celiac Disease is diagnosed by confirming the presence of intestinal damage to the small intestine through a biopsy, along with a clinical response to the gluten-free diet. However, serological markers, e.g., the IgA class anti-tissue transglutaminase (tTG) antibodies, are useful screening tests. The sensitivity and the specificity of the IgA anti-tTG test are 94% and 97%, respectively.
    To address the large number of undiagnosed cases, a team of researchers recently set out to assess whether an active case-finding strategy in primary care could lead to increased frequency of celiac disease diagnosis, and to assess the most common clinical manifestations of the condition.
    The team was made up of Carlo Catassi, M.D., M.P.H.; Deborah Kryszak, B.S.; Otto Louis-Jacques, M.D.; Donald R. Duerksen, M.D.; Ivor Hill, M.D.; Sheila E. Crowe, M.D.; Andrew R. Brown, M.D.; Nicholas J. Procaccini, M.D.; Brigid A Wonderly, R.N.; Paul Hartley, M.D.; James Moreci, M.D.; Nathan Bennett, M.D.; Karoly Horvath, M.D., Ph.D.; Margaret Burk, R.N.; Alessio Fasano, M.D.
    737 women and 239 men, with a median age of 54.3 years, who attended one of the practices participated in a multi-center, prospective study involving adult subjects during the years 2002-2004. All individuals with celiac-associated symptoms or conditions were tested for immunoglobulin A anti-transglutaminase (tTG) antibodies. Those with elevated anti-tTG were then tested for IgA antiendomysial antibodies (EMA). All who were positive for EMA were advised to undergo an intestinal biopsy and HLA typing.
    30 out of 976 study subjects showed a positive anti-tTG test (3.07%, 95% CI 1.98-4.16). 22 patients,18 women, 4 men, were diagnosed with celiac disease. In these 22 cases the most common reasons for screening for celiac disease was: bloating (12/22), thyroid disease (11/22), irritable bowel syndrome (7/22), unexplained chronic diarrhea (6/22), chronic fatigue (5/22), and constipation (4/22).
    The prevalence of celiac disease in the serologically screened sample was 2.25% (95% CI 1.32-3.18). The diagnostic rate was low at baseline (0.27 cases per thousand visits, 95% CI 0.13-0.41) and rose sharply to 11.6 per thousand visits (95% CI 6.8-16.4, P
    This study shows that the diagnosis rate for celiac disease can be significantly increased through the implementation of a strategy of active case-finding.
    Am J Gastroenterol. 2007;102(7):1454-1460.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/15/2009 - A recent clinical study has shown B vitamins to be beneficial for celiac sufferers following gluten-free diets. Vitamin deficiency and less than optimal health are common problems for people with celiac disease, even those who faithfully follow a gluten-free diet. Common problems associated with long-term celiac disease include general malaise, and less than optimal well-being.
    To better understand the benefits of supplemental doses of B vitamins for patients with celia disease, a team of researchers recently set out to evaluate the biochemical and clinical effects of B vitamin supplements in adults with long-term celiac disease. The research was made up of doctors C. Hallert, M. Svensson, J. Tholstrup, and B. Hultberg.
    The team assembled a group of 65 adults with celiac disease for a double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial. 61% of the group was female, and each had followed a gluten-free diet for several years.
    For 6 months, patients received daily doses of either a placebo, or of B vitamins in the amount of 0.8 mg folic acid, 0.5 mg cyanocobalamin and 3 mg pyridoxine. At the end of the trial period, doctors gauged vitamin effectiveness by measuring psychological general well-being (PGWB), together with total levels of plasma total homocysteine (tHcy), a reliable indicator of B vitamin status.
    In all, 57 of the 61 enrolled patients completed the trial (88%). Baseline tHcy levels for these patients averaged 11.7 micromoles/L (range = 7.4 to 23.0), which was markedly higher than the 10.2 micromoles/L for the control group (range = 6.7 to 22.6) (P < 0.01).
    After the B vitamin treatment, patient tHcy levels dropped an average of 34% (P < 0.001). Patients experienced substantial improvement in well-being (P < 0.01). Even patients who initially reported poor well-being showed notable improvements in Anxiety (P < 0.05) and Depressed Mood (P < 0.05) .
    These improvements, the normalization of tHcy levels, together with the substantial increase in well-being, led the research team to conclude that people living gluten-free with long-term celiac disease do indeed benefit from daily supplemental doses of vitamin B, and that doctors should consider advising the use of B vitamins supplements for these patients.

    Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2009 Apr 15;29(8):811-6.


    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 06/12/2009 - In a medical first, researchers at UCLA have made a connection between intestinal inflammation and systemic chromosome damage in mice, a discovery that may pave the way for early identification and treatment of human inflammatory disorders, some of which raise the risk for various kinds of cancer, according a study published in Cancer Research.
    Scientists discovered that local intestinal inflammation caused DNA damage to lymphocytes of the peripheral blood circulating throughout the body. So, contrary to conventional medical wisdom, chromosome damage is not limited to the immediate intestine, but involves body tissues far away from the actual inflammation. Their results showed single- and double-strand DNA breaks in the blood, and chromosome damage in peripheral blood indicating systemic genetic damage.
    Inflammatory diseases have been linked to some lymphomas and abdominal, liver and colorectal cancers, said Robert Schiestl, lead author, and professor of pathology, radiation oncology and environmental health sciences and a Jonsson Cancer Center scientist.
    Finding inflammation early – before any symptoms surface - and treating the associated causes quickly may prevent the damage that eventually triggers these cancers, he said. Before the study, researchers had no knowledge that "intestinal inflammation causes damage that can be found throughout the body,” said Schiestl, adding that this "may help explain how inflammation leads to these cancers.”
    Intestinal inflammation can be caused by such maladies as Crohn’s disease, inflammatory bowel disease, ulcerative colitis and Celiac disease. Nearly 1.5 million Americans, and 2.2 million Europeans currently suffer from inflammatory bowel diseases and global incidence is on the rise, Schiestl said.
    The discovery opens up the possibility of using chromosome damage in the peripheral circulating blood as a biomarker to spot intestinal inflammation before any symptoms surface.
    Researchers were able to detect chromosome damage in the blood of specially bred mice before the onset of colitis, said Aya Westbrook, a graduate student of the UCLA Molecular Toxicology Interdepartmental Program and the paper's first author. Westbrook added that disease severity correlated directly with higher levels of chromosome damage in the blood.
    Chromosome damage, according to study author Dr. Jonathan Braun, professor and chairman of the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at UCLA, may be the “earliest detectable indicator” of intestinal inflammatory disease. Currently, the only way to diagnose patients with inflammatory bowel disease is through full endoscopic exam, which is both invasive and costly. In theory, Braun said, a biomarker blood test might replace the invasive endoscopic exam and allow physicians to identify early inflammatory disease before it develops fully.
    Spotting disease and being able to ward it off early is one of the Holy Grails of all medicine. This breakthrough could “change the natural history of these diseases,” Braun said. For the first time, doctors might have a tool that can actually help spot inflammation, the earliest precursor to multiple kinds of cancer, at its earliest stages, long before any actual disease develops. This could lead to the prevention of tens of thousands of cancers.
    UCLA researchers have launched a clinical trial to confirm their findings in humans, Schiestl said. They’re focusing on patients with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis. They're hoping the discovery will permit them to test new strategies for treating smoldering disease, which we’ve never been able to identify before,” Schiestl said, adding that they might be able to assess new drugs for treating early inflammatory disease.
    The research may also show why some patients with inflammatory disease develop cancers, while others endure chronic inflammation for decades, yet remain cancer-free. Researchers suspect that some unknown molecular mechanisms might work to protect some patients and not others. Finding such mechanisms might lead to tests for predicting which patients with intestinal inflammatory diseases are predisposed to cancer.
    Cancer Research: June 1 2009, Volume 69, Issue 11 

  • Recent Articles

    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.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/20/2018 - A digital media company and a label data company are teaming up to help major manufacturers target, reach and convert their desired shoppers based on dietary needs, such as gluten-free diet. The deal could bring synergy in emerging markets such as the gluten-free and allergen-free markets, which represent major growth sectors in the global food industry. 
    Under the deal, personalized digital media company Catalina will be joining forces with Label Insight. Catalina uses consumer purchases data to target shoppers on a personal base, while Label Insight works with major companies like Kellogg, Betty Crocker, and Pepsi to provide insight on food label data to government, retailers, manufacturers and app developers.
    "Brands with very specific product benefits, gluten-free for example, require precise targeting to efficiently reach and convert their desired shoppers,” says Todd Morris, President of Catalina's Go-to-Market organization, adding that “Catalina offers the only purchase-based targeting solution with this capability.” 
    Label Insight’s clients include food and beverage giants such as Unilever, Ben & Jerry's, Lipton and Hellman’s. Label Insight technology has helped the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) build the sector’s very first scientifically accurate database of food ingredients, health attributes and claims.
    Morris says the joint partnership will allow Catalina to “enhance our dataset and further increase our ability to target shoppers who are currently buying - or have shown intent to buy - in these emerging categories,” including gluten-free, allergen-free, and other free-from foods.
    The deal will likely make for easier, more precise targeting of goods to consumers, and thus provide benefits for manufacturers and retailers looking to better serve their retail food customers, especially in specialty areas like gluten-free and allergen-free foods.
    Source:
    fdfworld.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/19/2018 - Previous genome and linkage studies indicate the existence of a new disease triggering mechanism that involves amino acid metabolism and nutrient sensing signaling pathways. In an effort to determine if amino acids might play a role in the development of celiac disease, a team of researchers recently set out to investigate if plasma amino acid levels differed among children with celiac disease compared with a control group.
     
    The research team included Åsa Torinsson Naluai, Ladan Saadat Vafa, Audur H. Gudjonsdottir, Henrik Arnell, Lars Browaldh, and Daniel Agardh. They are variously affiliated with the Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Institute of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Karolinska University Hospital and Division of Pediatrics, CLINTEC, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Clinical Science and Education, Karolinska Institute, Sodersjukhuset, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Mathematical Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Diabetes & Celiac Disease Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden; and with the Nathan S Kline Institute in the U.S.A.
    First, the team used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS) to analyze amino acid levels in fasting plasma samples from 141 children with celiac disease and 129 non-celiac disease controls. They then crafted a general linear model using age and experimental effects as covariates to compare amino acid levels between children with celiac disease and non-celiac control subjects.
    Compared with the control group, seven out of twenty-three children with celiac disease showed elevated levels of the the following amino acids: tryptophan; taurine; glutamic acid; proline; ornithine; alanine; and methionine.
    The significance of the individual amino acids do not survive multiple correction, however, multivariate analyses of the amino acid profile showed significantly altered amino acid levels in children with celiac disease overall and after correction for age, sex and experimental effects.
    This study shows that amino acids can influence inflammation and may play a role in the development of celiac disease.
    Source:
    PLoS One. 2018; 13(3): e0193764. doi: & 10.1371/journal.pone.0193764

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/18/2018 - To the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service animals.
    If you’ve flown anywhere lately, you may have seen them. People flying with their designated “emotional support” animals. We’re not talking genuine service animals, like seeing eye dogs, or hearing ear dogs, or even the Belgian Malinois that alerts its owner when there is gluten in food that may trigger her celiac disease.
    Now, to be honest, some of those animals in question do perform a genuine service for those who need emotional support dogs, like veterans with PTSD.
    However, many of these animals are not service animals at all. Many of these animals perform no actual service to their owners, and are nothing more than thinly disguised pets. Many lack proper training, and some have caused serious problems for the airlines and for other passengers.
    Now the major airlines are taking note and introducing stringent requirements for service animals.
    Delta was the first to strike. As reported by the New York Times on January 19: “Effective March 1, Delta, the second largest US airline by passenger traffic, said it will require passengers seeking to fly with pets to present additional documents outlining the passenger’s need for the animal and proof of its training and vaccinations, 48 hours prior to the flight.… This comes in response to what the carrier said was a 150 percent increase in service and support animals — pets, often dogs, that accompany people with disabilities — carried onboard since 2015.… Delta said that it flies some 700 service animals a day. Among them, customers have attempted to fly with comfort turkeys, gliding possums, snakes, spiders, and other unusual pets.”
    Fresh from an unsavory incident with an “emotional support” peacock incident, United Airlines has followed Delta’s lead and set stricter rules for emotional support animals. United’s rules also took effect March 1, 2018.
    So, to the relief of many bewildered passengers and crew, no more comfort turkeys, geese, possums or other questionable pets will be flying on Delta or United without meeting the airlines' strict new requirements for service and emotional support animals.
    Source:
    cnbc.com