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Is Epitope-Specific Immunotherapy for Celiac Disease a Foundation for Future Autoimmune Vaccines?

Celiac.com 06/19/2013 - Currently, immunosuppressant drugs are the only real treatment option for most autoimmune disorders, such as celiac disease and Type 1 diabetes.

Photo: CC--@alviseniHowever, researchers are busily exploring the possibilities offered therapeutic vaccines, known as antigen-specific immunotherapy. ImmusanT is one company working to develop a vaccine that will allow patients with celiac disease to safely eat gluten (the antigen). That vaccine is presently undergoing clinical trials.

ImmusanT and its research partners are looking to build on their expertise in celiac disease to improve their understanding of antigen-specific immunotherapy for other autoimmune diseases.

In Current Opinion in Immunology, researchers Bob Anderson and Bana Jabri describe how identification of pathogenic T cell epitopes (segment of the antigen) and recent initiatives to optimize immune monitoring have helped drive rational vaccine design in human autoimmune diseases.

Celiac disease has provided researchers with the first opportunity to design and test epitope-specific immunotherapy with a thorough understanding of disease-causing T cell epitopes.

This approach offers "truly customized immunotherapy for patients with celiac disease according to their genetics and the molecular specificity of their immune response to gluten," said Bob Anderson, PhD, MBChB, Chief Scientific Officer of ImmusanT.

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Because celiac disease shares key features, such as susceptibility genes, presence of autoantibodies and destruction of specific cells, with other autoimmune disorders, like Type 1 diabetes and rheumatoid arthritis, it provides a model for understanding and exploring the triggers and drivers of autoimmunity, in general, write Drs. Bana Jabri and Ludvig Sollid in the Perspectives section in Nature Reviews Immunology.

By factoring in the association with the major histocompatibility complex (MHC), post-translation modifications, the antigen and the tissue, researchers can design methods that help to the spot potential drivers of autoimmune disease.

Because peptide-specific therapy specifically targets the immune cells that drive the disease process, "it offers the potential to prevent and cure disease, without inducing general immunosuppression," said Bana Jabri, MD, PhD, Director, University of Chicago Celiac Center; Professor, Department of Medicine, Pathology and Pediatrics, University of Chicago; and Senior Scientific Advisor to ImmusanT.

Ludvig M. Sollid, MD, PhD, is Director, Centre for Immune Regulation; Professor of Medicine, Department of Immunology, University of Oslo; Consultant, Oslo University Hospital-Rikshospitalet; and member of ImmusanT's Scientific Advisory Board.

Dr. Jabri is Co-Chair of the 15(th) International Celiac Disease Symposium to be hosted by the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center, September 22-25, 2013.

The event will draw the world's top scientists and physicians to discuss the most recent scientific advances in managing and treating celiac disease and gluten-related disorders.

 

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9 Responses:

 
Melinda Jepson
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said this on
20 Jun 2013 4:32:18 AM PDT
This is good news for us gluten-free people.

 
CeliacDiseaseCtr
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said this on
20 Jun 2013 11:08:26 AM PDT
Both of these doctors will be at the International Celiac Disease Symposium discussing their progress toward a cure... join us there, as the ICDS is a unique opportunity to have your questions answered about treating and curing gluten-related disorders!

 
Joan
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said this on
20 Jun 2013 5:17:46 PM PDT
Good news for GLUTEN-free persons and if it really works for the person. How long before it is ready to sell and how much will it cost?

 
Ken Olson
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said this on
20 Jun 2013 8:14:35 PM PDT
Sounds interesting. What is the cost of the Symposium?

 
Mark Bogdany
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said this on
25 Jun 2013 11:24:27 AM PDT
Look forward to learning about more research like this!

 
Adrienne
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said this on
26 Jun 2013 6:01:43 AM PDT
I am hopeful.

 
Amir
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said this on
27 Jun 2013 2:22:16 PM PDT
By suppressing immune systems, I hope the body of celiac person would not susceptible to other diseases or the immune system would not malfunction.

 
annaya
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said this on
28 Jun 2013 8:19:06 AM PDT
When will it be available???

 
Rhonda
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said this on
30 Jun 2013 3:00:23 PM PDT
Good article. Even if the vaccine works, I will never knowingly eat gluten again. There is a reason it is so bad for us, and in general, all processed foods and GMOs are the real problem. However, it would be nice not to have the horrible results of inadvertently and unknowingly eating gluten.




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MelissaNZ, Has your daughter been checked for vitamin deficiencies??? Vitamin D deficiency symptoms include urinary incontinence, oral candidiasis (thrush), skin rashes, bumps on the backs of arms, joint pain, distended stomach and short stature. Bones can't grow much without vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency causes delayed gastric emptying (food doesn't move through the gastrointestinal tract at a normal speed and the intestines bloat) which explains your daughter's delayed reaction to the cake. Vitamin A deficiency is also a cause of bumps on the back of the arms. Vitamin A deficiency causes vision problems. Vitamin A and D are both fat soluble vitamins. Absorption of fats is a problem for Celiacs. So is absorption of B vitamins and important minerals. B Complex vitamins are water soluble and must be replenished every day. Skin rashes are associated with several B vitamins like niacin (B3), B12, and thiamine (B1). I went through a period of severe malnutrition prior to diagnosis. It was not a pleasant experience. I had symptoms similar to your daughter's, including the incontinence, which resolved on vitamin D supplementation. Please, please have your daughter tested for vitamin D deficiency. And have her B vitamins checked as well. Celiac Disease causes malabsorption. Malabsorption causes deficiency diseases. Newly diagnosed Celiacs need to be checked for deficiencies. I hope this helps.

I will try to make my long story short, I have been searching my whole life for a diagnosis, I have seen pretty much every doctor possible I even went through a spinal tap recently because they thought I had multiple sclerosis, when I was younger I was always throwing up and having stomach problems, a couple hospital visits they thought I had appendicitis, I started having a neurological symptoms as well as anxiety and depression, The fatigue was just over bearing, I was having numbness and tingling and muscle spasms all the time eventually started having seizures, which kind of cycled through and stop happening after a couple months, and then it dawned upon me my brother has celiac pretty severely, my grandmother also has celiac, my dad does as well, I don't know why I never thought that it could be my issue, for the last week I have Been gluten-free and steering clear of cross-contamination, my dizziness is improved my fatigue is improved as well as rashes I was getting on my arms and sides, I have no more muscle jerks or spasms, The problem is I have horrible insurance and I cannot afford testing, so I am at least trying to do it an home blood test, I know it's not very accurate on telling me if I have celiac or not, But the thought I may never know for sure if I have it is very daunting. My family keeps telling me you don't need to spend thousands of dollars to have a doctor tell you you can't eat something you already know you can't. Just was wondering if anybody else has been in my position and seeing if anybody has a vi just was wondering if anybody else has been in my position and seeing if anybody has advice, I don't want to be known as one of those people who believe they have something and people with the disease frown upon them it's a very scary thing to think about.

...ON a side note this is quite easy, you can make your own out of any gluten-free Bread mix, I recently started using a coconut flour blend for this.......Most often people associate caraway with Rye Bread so you just add caraway seeds to the dough and a bit more vinegar to sour it a tad and BAM gluten-free Rye Bread knock off. I think Authentic Foods even has a additive to put in bread mixes to make it taste like Rye Bread....Or you can buy it preamade, I have issues with all the other ingredients but as for one of the best gluten-free Breads out the Canyon House makes a Rye like bread https://canyonglutenfree.com/buy-gluten-free-bread-products/Gluten-Free-Rye-Deli-Sandwich-Bread.html

Took me less than a minute, although why did they need our addy and phone?

As mentioned before you said she had rashes, have they checked if that is DH? That is a positive sign of celiac and those with the DH manifestation can have problems getting a postive with the gut biopsy. Here are some links. https://celiac.org/celiac-disease/understanding-celiac-disease-2/dermatitis-herpetiformis/ https://www.gluten.org/resources/getting-started/dermatitus-herpetiformis/ Please read up on this. She can get the rash tested for the disease if it is DH.