Notes from the GIG Conference

My friend Claire was gracious enough to let us share the notes that she took at the 2011 GIG Conference.  I was generally too busy running errands, helping with the kids, helping the vendors, or helping Sara with Roben Ryberg’s cooking demo.  I didn’t really hear any of the speakers.

Claire’s notes:

The 2011 GIG Convention was held at the Gaylord Palms Hotel in Orlando, FL for 2
days in early July. Speakers covered various topics related to Celiac Disease and the
widening spectrum of Gluten Sensitivity.

Dr Tom O’Bryan, DC, CCN, DACBN spoke to the entire conference after breakfast on
Friday. In June, 2011, the 13th International Symposium on Celiac Disease was held in
Oslo. He talked about issues discussed at the conference.

*Currrently, a diagnosis of Celiac Disease is made with positive serological
studies that measure reactions to the peptide gliadin found in the wheat molecule and a
small bowel mucosal villous atrophy with crypt hyperplasia that recovers on a gluten-
free diet. He described the villi as a “shag carpet”.

*There are many patients who have normal blood serology and a “shag carpet”
showing no damage. However under the surface layer of cells, inflammatory cells can
be seen. These patients may find relief of symptoms by going on a gluten free diet.
Often these individuals are diagnosed as Gluten Intolerant.

The International Symposium has named Gluten Sensitivity as a BROAD spectrum.
Described as an umbrella, with CD- the intestinal damage in reaction to the gliadin
portion of the wheat molecule as just one manifestation . It is now suspected that those
with Gluten Sensitivity may be reacting to other peptides within the wheat molecule.
There are over 50! Current lab studies were developed to measure the reaction to just
the gliadin portion of the molecule.

Dr. Guandalini, MD

*research has begun to find strategies that prevent Celiac Disease. It is
increasingly common, the diet is hard to follow, 30% do not fully respond to the diet, and
5 % develop refractory CD. Note from Cassandra: the diet is not “hard to follow”.  It takes some time and effort to really understand it, and it takes the desire to keep your body healthy, above the desire to fit in.

*Undiagnosed and untreated CD is associated with an increased morbidity and
mortality EVEN when symptoms are minimal or none, and inflammation of the intestine
is mild.

*Prevalence in the USA is increasing and doubles every 20 years!

*Studies are underway looking at breastfeeding and when to introduce gluten.

*Does microbiome influence onset? (Gut bacteria)

*Do rotoviruses play a role?

*Can strategies beyond the GFD be developed?

*Can tests be developed to make a definite diagnosis in patients who have
started the diet without a diagnosis?

He also spoke on Gluten Sensitivity: there are no objective markers. Preliminary data
show such patients to have a “stressed” intestinal lining. The aim is to identify objective
diagnostic markers to diagnose and treat gluten sensitivity.

Dr Cynthia Rudert, MD, FACP- Medical Advisor, Celiac Disease Foundation, Gluten
Intolerance Group–discussed all the various symptoms and “the iceberg”. Those
diagnosed are above the waterline. Underneath the waterline are large numbers.
Patients with IgA antibody deficiency have a 31 FOLD INCREASED RISK OF CD!

Dr Theologos Malahias, DDS- discussed various presentations of CD throughout the
body, zeroing in on dental effects.
*effects may include color, affect enamel, delay eruption of teeth, and apthous
ulcers. He showed pictures of various dental problems.

*Research is showing defects are common among patients with CD. They tend
to be bilateral, symmetrical and affect mainly incisors and the molars.

*Cited 2 instances of children with dental enamel defects with negative
serologies for CD. BUT, both mothers tested positive for CD.

*Major dental product manufacturers of dental adhesives, impression materials,
restorative materials and toothpastes DO NOT include gluten in their products.
However, due to marketing and multitude of companies one should call when in doubt.

Julie Starkel, MS, MBA, RD/CD- discussed allergies and sensitivities.

*an allergy can cause anaphylaxis- a serious medical issue!, eosinophilic
esophagitis, food protein induced entercolitis and oral allergy syndrome.

*Sensitivities are NOT life threatening. Chronically, they can tax the immune
system. Sensitivities are documented in history as far back as Hippocrates in 400 BC!

Allergies are common in Children, Sensitivites more common in adults.

Also presented were talks on social issues as a child, teenager, adult. A presentation
was made on travel with CD and strategies to stay healthy while away from home, and
vitamin replenishment.
(I was not at all of these presentations- they were either in conflict with another I
attended, or when I volunteered to check tickets at the door. Some of the files I could
not open either on the IMAC or the Windows notebook)

As always with a GIG conference, there are old friends, new friends and lots of
wonderful food. The exhibit hall had rows of food to sample from favorite and new vendors, cookbooks, coupons and cooking demos on the stage.

15th International Celiac Symposium
Chicago, Illinois
September 22-25, 2013
ICDS2013.org

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