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Wheat varieties and Celiac Disease

Many people fear that modern wheat varieties contain more immunoreactive proteins than in the past and that this is the cause of the increased incidence of wheat-related disorders. It has long been known that wheat proteins can activate disorders such as celiac disease or wheat allergies. Roughly one or half a percent of the mature or adult age group of the population is pretentious worldwide.

What is Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease, which affects the small intestine of the patient. Upon the ingestion of gluten, the body produces an immune response that attacks the small intestine. Celiac Disease is also known as celiac sprue, non-tropical sprue, or gluten-sensitive enteropathy.

It’s a hereditary disease which runs in the family from generation to generation. Untreated celiac disease may lead to other autoimmune disorders. The only known treatment for this condition is to totally cut off the gluten supply in the diet, which means no bread or beer!

Gluten is a protein found majorly in products like wheat, barley, rye, and other grains. Gluten makes dough elastic and provides bread with its chewy feel.

In current times, the number of people affected by a wheat allergy or gluten or wheat sensitivity has rocketed sharply. Nevertheless, why is this the issue? And does this mark for the reason whether modern Wheat strain contains more immune-reactive protein compared to past strains or not? A new study of research is serving the right to answer this question. This also additionally guides the readers to the path of the further scope of research aspects in this field of research.

 

Insights from studies and researches

The research on this field of study is done by the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology at the Technical University of Munich and the Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research. The results obtained from the research are quite satisfying.

Wheat grains comprise about 70 percent starch. Their protein content is typically 10 to 12 percent when measured. Gluten books for the major share of proteins, which is approximately around 75 to 80 percent. Gluten is multiple mixtures of dissimilar protein molecules. These can be roughly divided into two subclasses: “gliadin” and “glutenin.”

According to trends, it has long been known that wheat proteins can activate disorders such as celiac disease or wheat allergies. Roughly one or half a percent of the mature or adult age group of the population is pretentious worldwide. In addition to that, non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) is becoming increasingly important in the western part of the world.

“Many people fear that modern wheat varieties contain more immunoreactive proteins than in the past and that this is the cause of the increased incidence of wheat-related disorders,” says Darina Pronin. She is from the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology. She is expressively involved in the study as part of her doctoral thesis. According to food chemists, wherever gluten is concerned, the protein cluster of gliadins is alleged of causing undesired immune reactions.

This leaves us wondering with lots of questions in our minds. Is there really any difference between past and present strains? If so, how huge is that?

 

Total of 60 wheat varieties over the period of 1891 — 2010 are analyzed

To help elucidate this, Katharina Scherf, and her squad at the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology started their investigations. For the reference purpose, the protein content of sixty most preferred wheat varieties from the period between 1891 and 2010. This is made possible with the joint hand team up by the Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research. It also has a wide-ranging seed collection in its switch. From this archive, the researchers selected the top five leading wheat varieties for each decade of the 120 years. It is thoroughly examined for results. To generate comparable samples, they cultivated the different varieties in 2015, 2016, and 2017 under the same geographical and climatic conditions.

Investigates by the crew of scientists demonstrates that, on overall observing, the modern wheat varieties comprise slightly less of proteins than the older ones. In disparity, the gluten content has remained persistent over the last 120 years. Although, when zoomed in the composition of the gluten has changed marginally in the result. While the proportion of critically viewed gliadins fell by around eighteen percent, the proportion of glutenin’s rose by around twenty-five percent. In addition, the researchers observed that higher precipitation of rainfall in the year of the harvest is accompanied by a higher gluten content in the samples.

 

Relatability levels of the environment are far greater compared to the selected wheat varieties

“Surprisingly, environmental conditions such as precipitation had an even greater influence on protein composition than changes caused by breeding. In addition, at least on the protein level, we have not found any evidence that the immunoreactive potential of wheat has changed because of the cultivation factors,” explains Katharina Scherf. She is now continuing her research as a professor at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT). Nevertheless, Scherf likewise points out that not all the protein types contained in wheat have been investigated concerning their physiological effects. Therefore, there is still a lot of research to be done.

Read the original research on gluten and wheat sensitivity

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