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Gluten proteolysis as alternative therapy for celiac patients: A mini-review

Sana M’hir
Manel Ziadi
Nadia Chammem
Moktar Hamdi


Celiac disease (CD) results from damage to the small intestinal mucosa due to an inappropriate immune response to a cereal protein (wheat, rye, barley). The only treatment for CD is life-long avoidance of gluten proteins. Gluten-free products are not widely available and usually more expensive. That is why; there is an urgent need to develop an alternative therapy. Enzymatic degradation of gluten among other approaches, abolishing its immunogenic and toxigenic activities, is an attractive alternative strategy for oral therapy in CD. Several proteases following different approaches were studied. This review focuses on enzymes (microbial or vegetal) designed to digest gluten. Also, recent biotechnological procedures that use microorganisms (cell factories for enzymes) as starter culture to eliminate gluten are reviewed in this manuscript.

Keywords: Celiac disease, gluten, proteolytic activity, lactic acid bacteria, therapy

African Journal of Biotechnology Vol. 11(29), pp. 7323-7330, 10 April, 2012

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eISSN: 1684-5315