Gluten intolerance (coeliac disease) is characterised by the development of a small intestinal lesion followingexposure to the gliadin fraction after consumption of wheat and related cereals. Cellular immune mechanisms are thought to be responsible for gliadin toxicity, but the toxic sequence/s within gliadin have not been clearly established. A panel of synthetic gliadin peptides was tested using peripheral blood mononuclear cells from coeliac patients and two assays for cell-mediated immunity. Using the indirect leucocyte migration inhibition factor and the macrophage procoagulant activity assays, gliadin peptides which were located in the aminoterminal or the proline-rich domain of the alpha/beta gliadin molecule were coeliac-active. Peptides predicted by T cell algorithms or on the basis of homology to adenovirus Ad12 Elb protein and which were located in the proline-poor gliadin domains were inactive. Protein sequence studies which indicate significant homology in the proline-poor gliadin domains with a number of non-coeliac-toxic seed proteins also supported the hypothesis that the prolinc-rich domains may be more important in the pathogenesis of coeliac disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Immunology and Allergy