The exact triggers of coeliac disease have been discovered.
Three out of the four subtances which trigger the immune response in coeliacs have been identified by a team of Australian and UK researchers.
The team had to work out which of a possible 16,000 gluten fragments were actually causing sickness. Now that they have detected the most poisonous suspects out of a round up of 90 toxic gluten elements. This means that they can start working on treatments and a possible cure.
It is estimated that 1 in 30 people in the UK, particularly women, live on a gluten-free diet. That’s a huge number of people who constantly avoid toast for breakfast, cake in their lunch and pasta for dinner.
Coeliac disease can be kept under control, however it is not easy – almost half of coeliac patients still suffer damage to their instensites five years after beginning to eat gluten-free.
We’re not talking about an overnight cure. Appropriate medicine may not be available for the next ten years. But with this breakthrough an end is in sight.
A potential therapy is now in development, experimenting with exposing people to very small amounts of the toxic fragments. The results of the trial should be available in the next few months.