Thursday, October 3, 2013

Clinical Trials Underway for a Vaccination of Celiac Disease

Recently a privately-held biotechnology company called ImmusanT, announced that it has started clinical trials to study Nexvax2. ImmusanT hopes that Nexvax2 will be the first successful therapeutic vaccine for celiac disease. According to an article written by ImmunsanT, “the goal is for Nexvax2 to restore celiac patients’ immune tolerance to gluten, reduce inflammation in the nutrient-absorbing villi that line the small intestine, return the intestine to a healthy state, and allow patients to eat a normal diet.” Currently, there are no approved medicines available for people with celiac disease, and therefor they must completely eliminate gluten-containing foods from their diet.

Why is this important?

As an autoimmune disorder, celiac disease harms the digestive process of the small intestine. Consumption of gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley, will make the immune system of a person with celiacs to respond by getting T cells to fight the offending proteins, thereby damaging the small intestine and preventing the absorption of important nutrients. As mentioned, the single option for those with celiac disease is to eliminate gluten from the diet. As much as a bread crumb of gluten can cause damage or discomfort. The result is a a highly restrictive diet, as gluten is found in more than just bread. Even soy sauce can have gluten. Consequently, nearly half the people on the diet still have damage to their small intestine. This disease will also contribute to weak “educational performance and failure to thrive in children.” Most with celiac disease are undiagnosed or untreated. If gluten is consumed the disease can also “increase risk of fractures and osteoporosis, problems during pregnancy and birth, short stature, dental enamel hypoplasia, dermatitis, recurrent stomatitis and cancer.”

Which is why “there has been tremendous enthusiasm about Nexvax2 from patients and the medical

community” ImmusanT's study is a double-blind, randomized, and placebo-controlled. Participants are given “ascending doses of Nexvax2 for the induction of gluten tolerance in patients on a gluten-free

diet.” According to Patrick H. Griffin, M.D., Chief Medical Officer of ImmusanT, “We are kicking-off a robust clinical program that we hope demonstrates Nexvax2 dramatically reduces the body’s immune response to dietary gluten so patients can resume a normal diet and return to good health.”

Until a vaccine is created, Kay's Naturals encourages everyone with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity to maintain a gluten-free diet. It is out hope that our entire line of gluten-free products will help make you successful. For more information on our gluten-free snacks and cereals go to website.