New non-invasive method for diagnosing coeliac disease developed

20 September 2021

Researchers from the UPV/EHU-University of the Basque Country and Ikerbasque have developed a new method of diagnosing coeliac disease using saliva. 

At present, diagnosis requires an endoscopy, an unpleasant and expensive procedure.

The team found that by testing patients’ saliva samples, they could predict the genetic risk of developing coeliac disease with a 91% success rate.

Ainara Castellanos-Rubio, the study’s lead researcher of the study, and Maialen Sebastian-delaCruz, a pre-doctoral student and author of the resulting paper, said the method ‘is very useful for screening patients with suspected coeliac disease before endoscopy is carried out’.

As the prediction model is not 100% accurate, the current method cannot be totally ruled out. Therefore, the authors propose that only patients predicted to have coeliac disease should undergo an endoscopy, considerably reducing the number performed.

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