Don’t Blame Wheat Breeding For Celiac Disease

Article By Senay Simsek, published on, 9.18.18

(excerpts from article) “In the past few years, there has been a rise in celiac disease, and there has been some speculation that this could be due to changes in the protein chemistry of modern wheat cultivars in comparison to historical cultivars. We attempted to test this hypothesis scientifically and formulated specific experiments focused on understanding the protein composition of historical and modern wheat, determining the presence of antigenic peptides and quantifying these peptides.”

“Wheat breeding did not contribute to changes in celiac antigenicity in hard red spring wheat”

“Overall, our results indicate that breeding efforts associated with improving the yield and disease resistance of hard red spring wheat did not change the celiac antigenicity of this type of wheat. That is, our results indicate that there is no association between celiac antigenicity and release year, therefore, modern wheat is not higher in celiac antigenicity compared to historical wheat. Therefore, our study scientifically debunks the idea that modern wheat is higher in celiac antigenicity.

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Additional reading on modern wheat breeding and rise of celiac:

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