A new test would allow individuals with suspected
celiac disease to avoid gluten challenge and
duodenal biopsy, but requires validation in a larger
The two main blood tests used to screen for celiac
disease rely on detecting an immune response to
gluten, but that immune response gradually
disappears in people who avoid gluten.
More than one percent of the population is following
a gluten-free diet, which makes it harder to
diagnose real cases of celiac disease.
An HLA-DQ–gluten tetramer-based assays that detects
gluten-reactive T cells identifies patients with and
without celiac disease with a high level of
accuracy, regardless of whether the individuals are
on a gluten-free diet.
The new test detects immune cells in a blood sample
that are specifically targeted at gluten proteins,
even when the individual hasn’t been recently
exposed to gluten.
The old tests detected celiac disease in 9 out of 10
patients who weren’t on a gluten-free diet and
identified celiac disease in only 4 of the 62
patients who’d been following a gluten-free diet.
The new test is 96 percent accurate in
distinguishing celiac disease patients from people
who didn’t have celiac disease but were still
following gluten-free diets.
For more information
HLA-DQ–Gluten Tetramer Blood Test Accurately
Identifies Patients With and Without Celiac Disease
in Absence of Gluten Consumption
UiO : University of Oslo
K.G. Jebsen Coeliac Disease Research Centre