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A new study confirms more inadequacies in the accuracy of serum lab testing to diagnosis gluten sensitivity and celiac disease…

Reports from our clinical laboratory database show that 75% of children <2 years old tested for celiac serology who were found positive for deamidated gliadin peptide (DGP) antibodies had negative results for tissue transglutaminase IgA. DGP levels were shown to decline and disappear without a gluten-free diet. This observation questions DGP’s specificity for diagnosis of celiac disease.

Source:

Clin Vaccine Immunol. 2010 May;17(5):884-6.

Here we go again.  One more study confirming the inaccuracies of traditional lab testing to identify problems with gluten.  It is well established that the intestinal biopsy used to diagnosis celiac disease is extremely flawed and inaccurate.  Most physicians order anti tissue transglutaminase and anti gliadin antibody testing to assist in the diagnosis.  This recent study points out more flaws in lab tests used to identify a reaction to gluten in patients.  Part of the problem has to do with the fact that these labs typically only look at one type of gluten.  There are thousands of different gluten proteins.  As a matter of fact, recent research identified 400 new gluten proteins.

This is just another reason why using genetic testing (HLA-DQ genes) to identify gluten sensitivity is far superior.  If you have had lab results or biopsy results that were inconclusive and need an definitive answer, it is recommended that you have genetic testing done.

If you are still confused on this issue, I highly recommend that you watch and read this post on the difference between gluten sensitivity, celiac disease, and proper lab testing <<<

All the best,

Dr. O – The Gluten Free Warrior

 

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Gluten Free Warrior Commentary

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10 responses on “Serum Lab Testing for Gluten Sensitivity Inaccurate

  1. Janet says:

    Are you using the word gluten sensitivity interchangeably with celiac disease? I thought there was a difference-you could be gluten sensitive but not have celiac disease. Am I correct in this assumption?

    • Hi Janet,
      You are correct. There is definitely a difference. Thanks for pointing that out to our readers!
      Gluten sensitivity = state of genetics
      Celiac = autoimmune disease of the small intestine that occurs in some people with gluten sensitivity

      Gluten sensitivity can contribute to hundreds of medical conditions. Celiac is just the most popular one.
      Have a great day!
      Dr. O

  2. […] study is just one more in a long list of studies that brings to light just how misleading blood tests and biopsies really […]

  3. Wayne Williams says:

    We are having problems with an “EX” insisting that the DNA test we had on our granddaughter shows only a 40% propensity for developing celiacs. So he refuses to follow the gluten-free diet. Both my husband, who has DH, and daughter, who was diagnosed with celiacs, found only after many years of symptoms. My daughters liver and kidneys, as well as, her intestines are damaged from the years of gluten inflammation. We have watched and recorded our 7 year old granddaughters symptoms since her mothers diagnose a few years ago and found them to be very much like what her mother exhibited over the years. Our daughter has primary care, but the father is claiming we are hurting our granddaughter by using a GF diet. The father claims an allergy scratch test he had done recently, conclusively showed she has no allergies to wheat or anything else. And refuses to follow a GF diet, he even got the school to change from serving her the gluten-free meals we send. Their counselor says she will only agree if we can find a conclusive test for gluten diagnose. All the doctors we have talked to say a gastro test isn’t appropriate for her age and size (she is in the low 10% of her age group) and has been since she was born. The doctors (none of them specialists, as the father points out), also agree with us that a preventive diet at this time would eliminate any problems and as she grows she might try to add in gluten if she so chooses to see if she has any ill effects. Any suggestions you can give us would greatly be appreciated.

    • So sorry to hear of your troubles. I would visit all of these doctors who agree with you and have them write letters for diet recommendations. Additionally, I would gather all of the data you have already collected (DNA, symptoms, etc), and I would take the father to court. I would also consider bringing in any of the friendly docs as an expert witness.
      Wishing you all the best,
      Dr. Osborne

  4. Michelle Hardoon says:

    My bloodtests came back positive celiac. Doing a biopsy won’t proved anything? How does one do genetic testing?

  5. Even if someone has no symptoms they can be celiac?
    (just anemia?)

  6. Marcus says:

    Hi Michelle,

    Some people don’t have obvious symptoms or classical symptoms.
    But the damage is happening on the inside.

    I recommend you go to the library to read the book Celiac Disease by Dr Peter Green.

  7. […] Anti-gliadin antibodies – this is a blood test that measures for antibodies to one of the types of gluten found in wheat.  It is not very comprehensive and often times gives false negative results. […]

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Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Dr. Peter Osborne, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information from the research and experience of Dr. Osborne and his community. Dr. Osborne encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.

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