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What is the Role of Genetics in Celiac Disease? PDF Print E-mail

A recent study by the University of Maryland's Center for Celiac Research suggest that at least 1 in 133 persons in the United States is affected. Many cases go undiagnosed or are asymptomatic for years. Celiac disease occurs in 5 - 15 % of the offspring and siblings of the celiac. In 70% of identical twin pairs, both twins have the disease. It is suggested that family members be tested.

According to Columbia University, “Among ethnic groups the highest prevalence is in a North African refugee population, followed by Ireland. Within populations of European origins the groups with increased risk include family members of patients with celiac disease, patients with autoimmune

diseases such as Type 1 diabetes, autoimmune thyroid disease and Sj√∂gren syndrome, children with Down syndrome as well as patients with Turner syndrome, Williams syndrome, and patients with chronic liver disease (most notably primary biliary cirrhosis).” Parents may want to have children with other autoimmune disorders be tested for celiac disease. 

Some content provided by: Kids with Celiac Disease: A Family Survival Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy,
Gluten-Free Children
, Danna Korn,,Woodbine House, 2001