Researchers at the University of Alberta in Canada have developed a supplement made from egg yolks which inhibits the absorption of gliadin. Gliadin is the gluten that often triggers reactions in those with celiac disease.

Although this is not a “cure” for celiac, it does mean that those with celiac may be able to eat limited amounts of gluten without reaction – a slice of pizza or croutons on a salad, for example.

It binds with gluten.

“This supplement binds with gluten in the stomach and help to neutralize it, therefore providing defence to the small intestine, limiting the damage gliadin causes,” said Sunwoo. “It is our hope that this supplement will improve the quality of life for those who have celiac disease and gluten intolerance.”

The research is being led by Hoon Sunwoo, an associate professor in the Faculty of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at the college. His colleague Jeong Sim, a retired professor, is co-developing the pill.

An efficacy trial for the all-natural pill will begin in the next year, the researchers say. From there, because it is not a pharmaceutical solution, approval in Canada could happen within three years of successful trial. If successful, Sunwoo and Sim have partnered with some companies to bring it to market. Testing and approvals in the United States and Europe would follow.

This is a solution that could change the lives of millions globally.

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