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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    In Vitro Gliadin Challenge Offers Accurate Diagnosis of Difficult Celiac Disease Cases

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Caption: Photo: CC--US Army Africa

    Celiac.com 10/24/2012 - Doctors can face challenges when attempting to diagnose celiac disease in patients who have already begun a gluten-free diet, and/or when the results of tests are inconsistent.

    To better understand this problem, a group of researchers set out to assess the benefits of an in vitro gliadin challenge.

    Photo: CC--US Army AfricaThe research team included Raffaella Tortora, MD, Ilaria Russo, PhD, Giovanni D. De Palma, MD, Alessandro Luciani, PhD, Antonio Rispo, MD, Fabiana Zingone, MD, Paola Iovino, MD, Pietro Capone, MD and Carolina Ciacci, MD.

    The study cohort included 57 patients without celiac disease, 166 patients with untreated celiac disease, 55 patients with celiac disease on a gluten-free diet, and 59 patients with challenging diagnosis.

    The team provided all patients with endoscopy for collection of duodenal samples, which served for the diagnosis of celiac disease and for the in vitro evaluation of the gliadin-induced mucosal expression of seven inflammatory markers: PY99, ICAM-1 (intercellular cell adhesion molecule), HLA-DR, CD3, CD25, CD69, and transglutaminase 2 IgA.

    Diagnostic work-up for celiac disease included the search of specific serum antibodies. Researchers asked patients in the challenging diagnosis group to stop gluten-free diet to facilitate the search for these antibodies under untreated conditions.

    They used the area under the receptor-operated curve (ROC) for statistical analyses on accuracy.

    For patients with and without celiac disease (not including those on a gluten-free diet) HLA-DR offered the best accuracy for diagnosing celiac disease (area under ROC = 0.99).

    Combining the data from the HLA-DR with data of other markers did not increase test accuracy.

    The team found similar results in the 39 patients of the difficult diagnosis group undergoing the search celiac disease-speciï¬c antibodies under untreated conditions.

    In vitro testing of mucosal HLA-DR to gliadin is an accurate tool for the diagnosing celiac disease, and also works in patients who are hard to diagnose.

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    Hmm. Interesting. Wonder if this could be upscaled for use in the average clinical setting, though. (In my experience gastroenterologists are not the most proactive in adopting new tests or treatments--they're fairly conservative, and often stuck to their training textbooks, which is part of why celiac disease has for so long been underdiagnosed.)

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    After being advised to start gluten-free - tests came back inconclusive for me, except for the original antibody blood test. It made going through endoscopy futile. I then had a genetic test, which showed one marker. In my estimation, whether I have celiac disease is still very inconclusive, but I continue the diet and have to take a probiotic as well. Disturbing, not to mention life changing.

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    Does anyone have any idea which centers offer this test? I asked Dr. Fasano about it at the Gluten & Allergen Free Expo in Atlanta back in May, but it was during his book signing, so there wasn't much chance to talk. According to him, centers are using this test, but I have yet to find one close enough to where I live (Georgia). Perhaps if airline tickets to New York or Massachusetts are not that expensive, I can look into the University of Columbia or Mass General...if they offer this test for certain.

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

  • Forum Discussions

    To the OP, once in a while this stuff happens.  Please feel free to start a new topic if that would make it easier.  I am afraid this is just part of forums on the internet. I hope this didn’t chase you off.  
    @anasss Nobody in this thread has called anyone "ignorant," so please don't say that if it did not happen. Also, the use of all capitals is, in forums and other places on the Internet, generally considered yelling and impolite, and there ...
    Bshake, Look up the "baking soda test" ...it is a nice home test to see if your daughter could have low stomach that is triggering the ulcers or creating the perfect conditions for ulcers to develop....mastic gum as has been mentioned...
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