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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Is a Vaccine for Celiac Disease Just Around the Corner?

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

    Celiac.com 03/30/2012 - A company called Microtest Laboratories is manufacturing doses of what they claim may be the first effective vaccine treatment for celiac disease. At this point, the only treatment for celiac disease is to avoid gluten in the diet.

    Photo: CC-R/DV/RSOther companies are working on vaccines for celiac disease, and several working trials are underway. However, this new drug's creator, ImmusanT, based in Cambridge says that, unlike other vaccines, which prevent an infection, their drug, Nexvax2 works by changing the immune system so it no longer attacks gluten.

    Production on Nexvax2, began last week, Steven G. Richter, Microtest’s president and science director, told a local reporter. So far, ImmusanT has raised $20 million in investor capital to bring the vaccine to market.

    Regarding the path from concept to manufacturing for Nexvax2, Richter says that the process has been anything but straightforward. "It's arty process," he told a local reporter, "you have to develop protocols for all the manufacturing and plans to do all of the work aseptically. You have to get all those protocols and plans approved through the regulatory process. Then you have to do the work.”

    Microtest is initially manufacturing 9,000 vials for ImmusanT: two 3,000-dose batches of vaccine and a 3,000-dose batch of inert placebo to be used in the clinical trial. Richter says that the control group contains everything except the active vaccine.

    ImmusanT is looking to start the first clinical trials in the second quarter of this year by testing the doses on people with celiac disease. The full article, in Massliveonline.com quotes Leslie J. Williams, president and CEO of ImmusanT, as saying that “The test will be if it [the vaccine] induces a tolerance for gluten in the diet."

    The report says that Williams and the company hope to get the vaccine commercially available by 2017. Will the company succeed? Will they have a successful vaccine available in just five short years? Let us know what you think.


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    As much as they like to call these vaccines, their own site's explanation begins with calling it "one of an emerging class of therapeutic vaccines based on the same principles as traditional desensitization therapy for allergic conditions using whole proteins"

     

    People get way too excited about a celiac "vaccine" while the term itself doesn't even strictly fit what the companies are doing.

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    This is unbelievable, do you guys think this is going to happen? I'm excited for this, I'll be doing research on this everyday if I have to. I doubt it will happen but reading this gave me hope.

     

    I would just donate my body to test all of these things to find a cure for celiac disease. I wish I was one of the people tested. Hopefully in the future there will be a cure for all of us.. give it your best Microtest Laboratories.

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    I hope this research goes well. The bread, crackers and pizza I can live without. But I would really like to be able to drink a good IPA again. The sorghum beers are horrible. I am quickly growing tired of ciders. I would definitely pay for this treatment if it works.

     

    I have also contacted ImmusanT about participation in the clinical trials.

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    Good Article. " It works by changing the immune system so it no longer attacks gluten". My Question is, " What will be the side effects of this turning off the body's ability to fight Gluten?" Will there still be destruction some place else and maybe worse? So, many times a pill is created to help one thing only to find out that it created another problem some place else in the body. Frankly, I am worried.

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    I posted a link to this article on a celiac facebook page I belong to and the initial response was very positive. Several people want to volunteer for the trials, for the sake of their children. There was some controversy about how they are actually doing the clinical trials knowing that there is a possibility your are 'poisoning' yourself by eating gluten while on the vaccine (which may be a placebo). Curious as to how the drug companies are handling the testing with an oath of not to cause harm.

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    I'm 61, diagnosed last summer, after so many doctors for min 30 years that something is very wrong medically with me, my "no results, it's all in your head," or better one "why do you want to be sick, enjoy life?" 5 years sounds great, although I wish it can be sooner. Wishing you all the best, it's not easy, today I got my results from, hemocode nutrition test, so little dood to eat, until last summer I didn't know that any of this exist, celiac is serious disease especially is discovered so late.

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    Guest muriel weadick

    Posted

    This is what all celiacs have been waiting for, and I am sure I am not alone in wishing the company success.Although it sounds too good to be true, let us remain optimistic. If the drug does become available in 5 years in the US, we in Canada will likely not be allowed to access it for several years after that! Too bad the company does not have a partner on this side of the border!

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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.

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