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Roehampton Nutritionist to study New ‘Gluten Friendly’ bread for Coeliac Disease Patients

This week marks Coeliac Awareness Week. In the Department of Life Sciences, Dr Adele Costabile is leading a team to test a new and innovative ‘Gluten Friendly’ bread that potentially won’t react in coeliac patients.

Posted: 12 May 2016

image for news story Roehampton Nutritionist to study New ‘Gluten Friendly’ bread for Coeliac Disease Patients
Dr Adele Costabile

Coelic disease is a common digestive condition where a person has an adverse reaction to gluten. Gluten consumption will cause a chronic inflammatory process leading to damage to the small intestine and poor absorption of nutrients, because the body mistakenly attacks healthy tissue. Gluten is a protein that is naturally found in most cereals wheat, barley, and rye. Currently, the only treatment is a gluten-free diet for a patient’s life-time.

‘Gluten Friendly’ bread is a new innovation and different from other gluten-free products on the market. It’s a patented bread that uses a new gluten detoxification method that still contains gluten but has been found in vitro studies that it won’t cause a reaction within a coeliac patient’s digestive system, therefore being ‘friendly gluten’. The method is based on the application of microwave energy for a few seconds to hydrated wheat kernels. It doesn’t compromise the technological properties necessary to process flour into bread, pasta and other baked goods.

In this pilot study, the University of Roehampton has teamed up with the University of Foggia with a research grant for £85,000 to develop the trials from in vitro to a developed method in humans to assess the potential for stopping the adverse reactions. 

Dr Costabile said, “This study will be one of the first to look at the reactions of coeliac disease patients to modified gluten. This preliminary study will look at the effects and success that this new bread has on coelic patients. Our findings could show a really positive impact for current coeliac disease patients, because the bread tastes better and potentially would cost less than other breads on the market. If we find that it’s successful, we then plan to roll out a larger trial based on our findings.”

Dr Costabile’s team, including Dr Triana Bergillos Meca and Mr Isidro Gonzalez will run trials to test differing amounts of friendly’ gluten in bread from summer and until autumn this year.

The Department of Life Sciences offers courses to become a registered Associate Nutritionist in the BSc in Nutrition and Health or opportunities for further study in the MSc in Clinical Nutrition course.

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