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Celiac.com 12/13/2010 - Driven by the high prevalence of celiac disease, a team of researchers based in Italy to assess a new, noninvasive disease screening strategy that would allow them to make an early diagnosis of celiac disease in 6- to 8-year-old children. Timely diagnosis will help doctors to initiate a gluten-free diet in willing patients, achieve growth targets, and prevent celiac disease complications. For the study, the research team recruited 5000 subjects, and ultimately tested 4048 saliva samples for anti-tissue transglutaminase (tTG) and immunoglobulin (Ig)A using fluid-phase radioimmunoprecipitation. For children with positive samples, the team arranged follow-up screening by serum radioimmunoassay tTG IgA, enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay tTG IgA, and anti-endomysium IgA. Children with positive serum assays underwent endoscopy with duodenal biopsies, and researchers advised those diagnosed with celiac disease to start a gluten-free diet. The team gained screening consent from 4242 parents (84.8%), and obtained usable saliva samples from a total of 4048 children (95.4%). Thirty-two children showed positive salivary tTG IgA, with another nine showing borderline autoantibody results. Thirty-one of the 32 tTG IgA-positive subjects, and three of the nine borderline subjects also had positive blood screens. Intestinal biopsy showed twenty-eight children with villous atrophy, while one child showed Marsh 1 lesions. The research team recommended a gluten-free diet to three children without performing endoscopy. This makes for a celiac disease rate of 1.16% in the study population, including 19 known cases of celiac disease. The results show that screening detected three cases of celiac disease for every two cases diagnosed before screening was 3:2. The ratio between symptomatic and asymptomatic patients was 1:1.6. The study shows that saliva screens for celiac disease can be effective in identifying celiac disease early in childhood. Also, for this study at least, the data shows full compliance with gluten-free diet in the children diagnosed with celiac disease. Source: Journal of Pediatric Gastroenterology & Nutrition 3 November 2010. doi: 10.1097/MPG.0b013e3181e6f2d0
Celiac.com 11/03/2008 - Blood testing for radioimmunoassay (RIA) tissue transglutaminase auto-antibodies (tTG-Abs) has proven to be a sensitive test for celiac disease follow-up. Recent studies have shown that RIA can accurately detect tTG-Abs in human saliva. However, not much is known about reliability of this method for monitoring the progress of celiac disease over time in patients who are attempting to follow a gluten-free diet. A team of researchers recently set out to assess salivary RIA tTG-Abs in celiac children on gluten-free diet. The research team included doctors M. Bonamico, R. Nenna, R.P.L. Luparia, C. Perricone, M. Montuori, F. Lucantoni, A. Castronovo, S. Mura; A. Turchetti, P. Strappini, and C. Tiberti. The team evaluated blood and saliva samples taken from 109 children at the time of their diagnosis for celiac disease. The first group included 71 females, with an average age of 9.4 years. A second group included 58 people who were following a gluten-free diet. The second group was broken into two subgroups: group 2a with 36 patients assessed at 3-6 months; and group 2b with 34 patients at 9 months or more (group 2b). The research team also included two control groups matched for age and sex. Group 3 included 89 gastroenterological patients, while group 4 included 49 healthy subjects. The team used RIA to detect tTG-Abs in saliva and blood, and compared the results against two other established tests: serum tTG-Abs ELISA and IgA anti-endomysium antibodies (EMA). The team detected salivary RIA tTG-Abs in 94.5% of patients from group 1, 66.7% of celiac patients from group 2a, and 50.0% from 2b. They detected blood RIA tTG-Abs in 98.2% of patients from group 1, 72.2% of celiac patients from group 2a, and 50.0% from 2b. The longer patients were on a gluten-free diet, the more the tTG-Abs decreased. The research team also found a correlation between saliva and serum levels (r = 0.75, P = 0.0001). A celiac disease follow-up showed comparable salivary and serum RIA sensitivities, and higher levels for EMA and ELISA methods. The research team concluded that it is possible to measure salivary tTG-Abs with a high level of accuracy; both at initial diagnosis for celiac disease, and also while patients are following a gluten-free diet. This discovery means that doctors treating people with celiac disease might soon be able to use a simple saliva test to monitor the progress of their patients’ gluten-free diets. Such a development might take remove much of the guesswork for celiacs who are trying to follow a gluten-free diet, and would be particularly useful for patients who might be asymptomatic, or who are at risk for celiac-associated conditions. Aliment Pharmacol Ther. 2008; 28(3): 364-370.
Celiac.com 02/09/2005 – The following abstract supports the use of fecal scIgA AGA combined with fecal IgA AGA, IgG AGA and IgM AGA to diagnose celiac disease, as they may be detected there even before they can be in the blood of celiac patients. This research adds support for the use of fecal testing as an early diagnostic tool, and perhaps also supports the work that has been done in this area by doctors like Kenneth Fine. Clin Lab. 2004;50(9-10):551-7. Comparison of different salivary and fecal antibodies for the diagnosis of celiac disease. Halblaub JM, Renno J, Kempf A, Bartel J, Schmidt-Gayk H. Clin Lab. 2004;50(9-10):551-7. ABSTRACT: To investigate the detectability and expressiveness of salivary and fecal anti-gliadin (AGA), anti-endomysium (EMA) and anti-tissue-transglutaminase (ATA) antibodies, 127 salivary and 160 fecal samples of healthy volunteers and salivary and fecal samples of 17 patients with histologically proven and 9 patients with suggested celiac disease were investigated in this study. With all salivary parameters and fecal IgA AGA, IgM AGA, IgA EMA and IgG EMA, healthy volunteers and patients showed partially overlapping results. The most promising results in our study with higher concentrations in patients with celiac disease were obtained by fecal scIgA AGA and a combined determination of fecal IgA AGA, IgG AGA and IgM AGA. Further investigations should be performed with fecal IgA EMA and scIgA ATA based on human recombinant tissue-transglutaminase. One patient with histologically proven celiac disease had normal serological but high fecal scIgA AGA and scIgA ATA values. This patient emphasizes the importance of fecal antibody determination for the diagnosis of celiac disease, at least in patients with suggested celiac disease and negative serum antibodies.
J Pediatr. 2004 May;144(5):632-6 Celiac.com 05/10/2004 - Italian researchers compared the serum samples from 39 celiac disease patients who were diagnosed with celiac disease after their first biopsy with 32 controls who had normal duodenal mucosa and 32 healthy volunteers. Salivary transglutaminase autoantibodies were detected in 97.4% of the patients who had celiac disease, and in 100% of their corresponding serum samples. All of the 32 healthy volunteers tested negative for both serum and saliva transglutaminase autoantibodies. The researchers conclude "This study demonstrates that it is possible to detect salivary transglutaminase autoantibodies in celiac disease with a non-invasive, simple to perform, reproducible and sensitive method."