The following was written by one of the CEDAR staff, Stephanie Tudor - TudorS@jove.uchsc.edu. Anyone with further questions should contact her directly. If you live in Denver and are biopsy-confirmed, they would love to hear from you.
The Celiac Disease Autoimmunity Research (CEDAR) project is affiliated with the Department of Preventive Medicine and Biometrics in the School of Medicine of the University of Colorado, Health Sciences Center. It is a project supported by a grant from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), and will collect data for a total of five years. The principal investigator is Marian J. Rewers, MD, MPH, Ph.D. Other co-investigators include: Jill Norris, Ph.D.; George Eisenbarth, MD, Ph.D.; Ronald J. Sokol, MD; and Edward Hoffenberg, MD.
The enrolled subjects are screened initially between the ages of two and five years of age with a serum sample tested using an IgA-based anti-endomysial antibody assay. The serum samples are also screened for IgA levels in order to rule out the potential for false negative results in IgA deficient children. For the subjects who are tested at a positive titration, follow-up includes a clinic evaluation and small bowel biopsy at the Pediatric Gastroenterology Department at the Childrens Hospital of Denver, Colorado. If a diagnosis of celiac is made, the subject is referred for nutritional counseling and follow-up serum testing is done six months after the diagnosis to confirm effective treatment. Dietary factors are also collected upon enrollment of the subjects, reflecting dietary changes that are made between the ages of one and two years of age, as the introduction of gluten into the diet usually occurs in this time frame. Information on family history of other autoimmune conditions is also collected. Subjects who test negative for the presence of anti-endomysial antibodies will be re-screened two years after their initial testing, to verify their immune status with respect to the anti-endomysial antibodies.
By the end of the study period, we hope to have data that more accurately defines the prevalence of celiac disease in a United States population. The children recruited based on their HLA type are from a general population screening, and their data should be able to provide more accurate statistics on prevalence, and perhaps incidence, as some of these children have been followed since birth. We also hope to have identify associations with potential environmental exposures which may increase susceptibility to celiac disease.