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Scientific study: new markers of disease activity in celiac disease

July 2009 | 5 min read


As more and more research is conducted in celiac disease, new markers of immune function are being identified that may provide information on how the disease is progressing in response to instituting a gluten-free diet. 

Key Points

  • Researchers investigated two new markers available through blood tests, referred to as phosphorylated signal transducers and activators of transcription (pSTAT1) and T-bet, a key transcription factor for the development of T-helper type cells, to determine whether they provide value in tracking the celiac disease and the effects of gluten-free diets.
  • Based on results from the study, the authors concluded, “…pSTAT1 and T-bet protein expression in peripheral blood mononuclear cells could be useful and sensible markers in the follow-up of CD patients to evaluate disease activity and response to dietary treatment.”

Key Takeaways

Biomarkers such as T-bet and pSTAT1, which can be evaluated through blood tests, may provide a simpler way to track the clinical course of celiac disease and the effects of gluten-free diets. Further research can confirm the utility of these and other blood-based biomarkers.


Frisullo G, et al. T-bet and pSTAT-1 expression in PBMC from coeliac disease patients: new markers of disease activity. Clin Exper Immunol 2009; 158:106-114.