Background and aims Coeliac disease (CD) is triggered by an abnormal reaction to gluten. Peptides resulting from partially digested gluten of wheat, barley or rye cause inflammation of the small intestinal mucosa. Previous contradictory studies suggest that oats may trigger the abnormal immunological response in patients with CD. Monoclonal antibodies (moAbs) against the main immunotoxic 33-mer peptide (A1 and G12) react strongly against wheat, barley and rye but have less reactivity against oats. The stated aim of this study is to test whether this observed reactivity could be related to the potential toxicity of oats for patients with CD.
Methods In the present study, different oat varieties, controlled for their purity and by their distinct protein pattern, were used to examine differences in moAb G12 recognition by ELISA and western blot. Immunogenicity of oat varieties was determined by 33-mer concentration, T cell proliferation and interferon γ production.
Results Three groups of oat cultivars reacting differently against moAb G12 could be distinguished: a group with considerable affinity, a group showing slight reactivity and a third with no detectable reactivity. The immunogenicity of the three types of oats as well as that of a positive and negative control was determined with isolated peripheral blood mononuclear T cells from patients with CD by measurement of cell proliferation and interferon γ release. A direct correlation of the reactivity with G12 and the immunogenicity of the different prolamins was observed.
Conclusions The results showed that the reactivity of the moAb G12 is proportional to the potential immunotoxicity of the cereal cultivar. These differences may explain the different clinical responses observed in patients suffering from CD and open up a means to identify immunologically safe oat cultivars, which could be used to enrich a gluten-free diet.
- Coeliac disease
- T cells
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Funding This work was supported by Asociación de Celíacos de Madrid (to SC) by grants PET2008_0055 from VI Plan Nacional de Investigación Científica, Desarrollo e Innovación Tecnológica (Ministerio de Ciencia e Innovación), IAB (Instituto Andaluz de Biotecnología) (to SC) and by AGR2009-4966M (Proyecto de Excelencia, Junta de Andalucía) (to TM). Biomedal thanks Corporación Tecnológica de Andalucía and Agencia IDEA for co-founding this study (to CA).
Competing interests None.
Patient consent Obtained.
Ethics approval This study was conducted with the approval of the Hospital Virgen de las Nieves, Granada, Spain.
Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.