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UnhappyCoeliac

Worming A Way Out For Coeliacs

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Bring on the hookworms mate!

SCIENTISTS are inching closer to a new therapy for auto-immune disorders but many will find the treatment hard to swallow.

Queensland-based Dr James Daveson admits a "yuck factor" is involved in his research, after he deliberately infected 20 volunteers who have coeliac disease with hookworms.

The tiny parasite, which burrows through the skin before travelling via the bloodstream to live in the gut, was shown to give these people an improved tolerance for bread.

"The people playing host to live worms tolerated the gluten challenge and fared better on the tests compared to the wormless control subjects," said Dr Daveson from Brisbane's Princess Alexandra Hospital.

"They experienced less inflammation and less damage was seen in the intestinal wall."

More than 250,000 Australians have coeliac disease, a condition in which their malfunctioning immune system treats the gluten in wheat as a foreign invader.

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Antibodies are produced that attack the wall of the bowel and this damage over time can increase a sufferer's risk of bowel cancer.

Dr Daveson said the research was based on the theory that our immune systems needed exposure to foreign organisms in order to work properly.

Several studies have shown a link between the vastly improved hygiene standards now enjoyed by humans and the growing number of autoimmune diseases.

Dr Daveson said it could be a case of the immune system picking a fight when it otherwise lacked a valid enemy.

He said the immune system may even work better with certain "friendly" organisms - like hook worms - on board.

"We have co-evolved with them ... (yet) we've cleaned up our world so well that we no longer have worms in our guts," Dr Daveson said.

"Some experts believe this is one of the reasons we're seeing an alarming increase in auto-immune disorders such as coeliac disease."

The worms used in the study are unique to humans, are not easily transmissible from person to person and unlike dog hookworm, they do not cause illness in humans.

At the end of the 21-week trial, all of the volunteers were offered medication to get rid of their parasite but all opted to keep their hookworm.

Dr Daveson will present the study's findings at the Australian Gastroenterology Week, an expert summit underway in Sydney this week.

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/lifestyle/the-...6-1225789785047

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:o OMG! I think I would be vomiting just thinking of having that thing inside me!

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I've read something before about parasite therapy for people with immune disorders. The science behind it is pretty solid. We live in an antibacterial world... and our immune systems are not challenged because of it. Our bodies are wired to combat all forms of invaders that it DOES have to fight. Take that away and you get more confused immune systems.

Is your immune system bored, perhaps??? :P

I quit using anti bacterial soaps after reading that. *I'll give damn near anything a try* Even with that... Not sure that I'd be up for swallowing parasites. At least not intentionally.

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Eeeeeeeeeeeeoooooooooooooooo!!!!

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I'm as grossed out as anyone at the thought, but I found this quote very interesting--

"At the end of the 21-week trial, all of the volunteers were offered medication to get rid of their parasite but all opted to keep their hookworm."

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I'm as grossed out as anyone at the thought, but I found this quote very interesting--

"At the end of the 21-week trial, all of the volunteers were offered medication to get rid of their parasite but all opted to keep their hookworm."

That line makes the hookworms seem kinda cute. Keep 'their' hookworm. Aww their little friend helpin' them out.

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Don't most people and animals have parasites anyway?

I have been reading about parasites and yeast causing eczema, dh and psoriasis.

I wish they would jump start the research on this disease and its causes.

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Don't most people and animals have parasites anyway?

I have been reading about parasites and yeast causing eczema, dh and psoriasis.

I wish they would jump start the research on this disease and its causes.

I was thinking, too. If the lil' hookworm ends up helping the human with celiac, it's more like 'mutualism' between two organisms, right? If they are both benefiting from each other. So the worm wouldn't really be a 'parasite' anymore (which is one benefiting off of the other whilst harming it). Or would the human be the parasite, if the immune system is attacking the little worm which is harming the worm but helping the human. Oooh the tables turn.

But yeah I think little mites and bacterias and whatnot are out and about all the time. Eating dead skin cells and whatnot.

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NPR did a piece on this yesterday, but they didn't mention celiac. They mentioned asthma and chrons. And they interviewed a man who went to Africa and intentionally infected himself by walking barefoot through a squalid poo-infested area for his terrible hayfever. It worked! At least that's what the man said.

That man is now selling hookworks to people that he, err, "harvests" from his own...

You can find a link on the NPR website. Apparently, one can have too many of these worms, which results in anemia, so the balance is crucial.

Basically, they said people in "first world" countries are too clean and that our immune system gets pretty bored, so it attacks our bodies. According to this theory, that accounts for almost all the asthma and other autoimmune ills-- kind of mind-blowing.

But consider this-- the hour before that there was a show about the importance of hand-washing. I don't know about you guys, but I am gonzo confused. The contradictions! Lordy.

It is the same with nutrition. One week eggs are good for you and the next wek another study comes out saying they are bad. One week lean beef is okay and the next week all red meat is basically satan in disguise.

A girl could go gaga trying to follow all the studies and separate the truth from the proverbial chaff!

Or take diet programs. Did anyone catch the show where Drs. Ornish and Andrew Weil and Atkins all were together on a panel? They started fighting like cats and dogs. If the so called experts can't agree, then what are we to do?

I just don't know what to think anymore. :blink: But I can tell you this: I don't want to intentionally infect myself with hookworms.

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But consider this-- the hour before that there was a show about the importance of hand-washing. I don't know about you guys, but I am gonzo confused. The contradictions! Lordy.

I'm with you, Lisa......very confusing! :blink:

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Ooh this is what I want!!

"Combination therapy (hookworm plus whipworm): $3,900.00 and is recommended for all but ulcerative colitis clients. Besides offering the best chance for achieving full drug-free remission Combination Therapy includes one free reinfection with whipworm when they die of old age around two years after the original treatment. Cost does not include shipping and multiple doses will be required, usually from three to four."

Good deal. Good deal. Might get a Swedish massage to top it off.

... ;)

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Wow. Trying a diet to see if it works is one thing, but seriously?? Bored immune systems? Given what we also know about how negatively antibiotics affect the immune system, I doubt they're bored. And given that celiac disease has been around for hundreds, if not thousands, of years prior to antibiotics and also in conjunction with these parasites, I somehow doubt this is any kind of serious solution, interesting as it may be.

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WOAH... Thats interesting. But... I am perfectly happy being gluten free as well! I dont really feel like I am missing so much, the diet is not so hard when you are single!

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It's toooooo gross even to think about imagining the hook worm wriggling and jiggling inside of you, there was an old lady who swallowed a fly, i don't know why whe swallowed a fly, perhaps she'll die....... I think I'll just remain gluten free, thanks but no thanks... :blink:

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