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Gluten-related disorders

Gluten-related disorders is the umbrella term for all diseases triggered by gluten. Gluten-related disorders include celiac disease (CD), non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS), gluten ataxia, dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) and wheat allergy. "Gluten intolerance" and "gluten sensitivity" are sometimes used as synonyms for gluten-related disorders, though a multi-disciplinary physician-led study, based in part on the 2011 International Coeliac Disease Symposium, concluded that the use of these terms should be avoided due to a lack of specificity.

Gluten, named from the Latin gluten meaning glue, is a substance that gives elasticity to dough helping it to rise and to keep its shape. It is found in many staple foods in the Western diet.

Currently, there is a growing incidence of a wide spectrum of gluten-related disorders all around the world, including CD and NCGS, as well as gluten-sensitive enteropathy‚Äďassociated conditions. The increase may be explained by the progressive westernization of diet, the expanded reach of the Mediterranean diet (which includes a lot of foods that incorporate gluten), the growing replacement of rice by wheat in many countries, the development in recent years of new types of wheat with a higher amount of cytotoxic gluten peptides, and the higher content of gluten in bread and bakery products, due to the reduction of dough fermentation time.

The following classification of gluten-related disorders was announced 2011 by an expert's panel in London, published 2012 and further expanded on later that year:

  • typical symptoms of celiac disease;
  • positivity of serum celiac disease immunoglobulin, A class autoantibodies at high titer;
  • human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DQ2 or DQ8 genotypes;
  • celiac enteropathy at the small bowel biopsy; and
  • response to the gluten-free diet.


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