New approach to celiac testing identifies more at risk
Full Text ScienceDaily, 08/30/2013
Australian researchers have developed a new approach to detecting coeliac disease, revealing this immune disorder is far more common than previously recognised. In a study of more than 2500 Victorians the researchers combined traditional antibody testing (measuring the immune response to gluten) with an assessment of specific genetic risk markers. They found more than half of Australians had genetic risk factors for developing coeliac disease. The research is published online today in the journal BMC Medicine. Dr Jason Tye–Din from the Immunology division at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute and Dr Bob Anderson, chief scientific officer at US biotechnology company ImmusanT, worked with Barwon Health, Deakin University, Healthscope Pathology and the University of Queensland Diamantina Institute to develop and trial the new diagnostic approach. Dr Tye–Din said the new approach of combining the genetic test with a panel of antibody tests would increase the accuracy of testing, decrease overall medical costs by reducing invasive diagnostic tests, and avoid medically unnecessary use of a gluten–free diet.