Gluten-Related Disorders - Supramolecular Medicine
Gluten-related disorders are a complex group of diseases that involve the activation of the immune system triggered by the ingestion of gluten. Among these, celiac disease, with a prevalence of 1%, is the most investigated, but recently, a new pathology, named nonceliac gluten sensitivity, was reported with a general prevalence of 7%. Finally, there are other less prevalent gluten-related diseases such as wheat allergy, gluten ataxia, and dermatitis herpetiformis (with an overall prevalence of less than 0.1%). As mentioned, the common molecular trigger is gluten, a complex mixture of storage proteins present in wheat, barley, and a variety of oats that are not fully degraded by humans. The most-studied protein related to disease is gliadin, present in wheat, which possesses in its sequence many pathological fragments. Despite a lot of effort to treat these disorders, the only effective method is a long-life gluten-free diet. Our research focusses on the current and novel molecular understanding of the supramolecular organization of gliadin and the 33-mer gliadin peptide fragment under physiological conditions and how the oligomerization of gluten affects the gut causing the critical host responses.
People involved in this project
Dr. Veronica Dodero