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Cause of Celiac Disease Found to be Mostly Genetic

Gut 2002;50:624-628

Celiac.com 05/02/2002 – Results of the first large population-based twin study of celiac disease were recently published in the April edition of the journal Gut. The study was conducted by Professor L Greco and colleagues at the UniversitĂ di Napoli Federico II, Dipartimento di Pediatria. The study compared identical twins (genetically identical) to fraternal twins (genetically not identical) who share only the same number of genes as non-twin siblings. This methodology allowed the researchers to determine what role a shared environment plays in the onset of celiac disease in comparison to a genetic role.

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The researchers matched the Italian Twin Registry with the membership lists of a patient support group for celiacs. Forty seven twin pairs were found and screened for antiendomysial (EMA) and antihuman-tissue transglutaminase (anti-tTG) antibodies. Identical twins were verified using DNA fingerprinting and fraternal twins were typed for HLA class II DRB1 and DQB1 molecules.

Their results indicate that 38% of the combined twin pairs showed signs of celiac disease, which breaks down to 75% of the identical twin pairs and 11% of the non-identical twin pairs. Additionally, females who had a twin with celiac disease were 30% more likely to develop it themselves, in comparison to an unaffected male twin. Further, the results of the study indicate that environmental factors have little or no effect on the acquisition of celiac disease, and that there is substantial evidence of a very strong genetic component that is only partially related to the HLA region. The researchers suggest that several genes work collectively to cause celiac disease, and a single missing or altered gene is probably not its cause.

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The only symptom I know of that is celiac for certain is dh, which must be diagnosed by a dermatologist.

I have both eoe and celiac and now that I have been gluten free for 18 months, my anemia is gone. It is good to get off the iron supliments because mine may have been the cause of my ulcers. It feels good to recover and heal! I may work my way down to fewer supliments and lots of feel great da...

Your daughter does not have a strong positive. I suspect that the GI might do as RMJ suggested which would be to load her up on gluten for six months and retest. On the other hand, with a diagnosed sibling and a very mild positive, your GI might recommend the endoscopy or run the test again to ...

I was diagnosed with celiac last year on an endoscopy looking for the cause of my anemia. At the time, my GI doc tested m for EoE and it was negative. Fast forward 11 months, I developed sudden heart burn, dysphagia out of the blue. My doc thinks it's EoE. Biopsy was last week and I am still wait...

No, the control test is to verify that she will react to that particular type of test. If she didn't, then certain of the bloods would not be applicable to her. They would be false negatives. As far as tests being weak positives, that's like being a little pregnant. A positive is a positive....