Nine coeliac gene regions now identified – four of which predispose for type 1 diabetes

Professor David van Heel, professor of gastrointestinal genetics at Barts and The London School of Medicine and Dentistry, and his team who include collaborators from Ireland, the Netherlands, and the Wellcome Trust Sanger Institute, have demonstrated that of the nine coeliac gene regions now known, four of these are also predisposing factors for type 1 diabetes.

Their research sheds light not only on the nature of coeliac disease, but on the common origins of both diseases.

Professor van Heel and his team first performed a genome wide association study in coeliac disease. Genetic markers across the genome were compared in coeliac disease subjects versus healthy controls. They then assessed around 1,000 of the strongest markers in a further 5,000 samples. Their results identified seven new risk regions, six of which harbour important genes critical in the control of immune responses, highlighting their significance in the development of the disease.

Said Professor van Heel: ‘So far our findings explain nearly half of the heritability of coeliac disease – now studies with many more samples from individuals with coeliac disease are needed to identify the precise causal genetic variants from each region, and understand how these influence biological processes.’

Nature Genetics – 2 March 2008
Courtesy of Science Daily


More research on coeliac disease


Top of page

If you found this article interesting, you will find many more general articles and research reports on coeliac disease here, and lots of information on the management of coeliac disease here.
You can also find articles and research reports on gluten intolerance here and articles on a wide range of other digestive conditions here.

For hundreds of gluten free foods see our freefrom food section here, and for nearly 800 gluten-free recipes see here.

And if you would like to get our FREE fortnightly e-newsletter with new products, recipes, articles and all the latest news from the allergy and freefrom world, just sign up here.