Celiac disease is a serious genetic autoimmune disease. It is triggered by consuming a protein called gluten, which is found in wheat, barley and rye.When a person with this disease consumes gluten they can have symptoms that include gas, bloating, cramping, and constipation. The symptoms come from the inflammation that is occurring in the small intestines. Sounds painful right? So why haven't researchers found a cure or something to help, other than pure avoidance of gluten.
What if researchers were working on a vaccine that could protect celiac disease patients from gluten exposure? It's not a cure, but it still makes me very excited. The vaccine is called Nexvax 2. The vaccine would be used to protect against gluten exposure while patients continue a gluten-free diet.
According to a article on Beyond Celiac, “the premise behind Nexvax2 is that if a small amount of the vaccine is given at first and the amount gradually increased, the immune system of those who have celiac disease and the gene most commonly associated with it, HLA-DQ2.5, will build up resistance to the harmful protein in gluten without any negative effects.”
Keep in mind that the only treatment for a patient (right now) with celiac disease is a strict gluten-free diet. This therapy is not yet commercially available.
To keep up with news about all the drugs being developed to treat celiac disease, you can sign up for a Research Opt-In here.