A Genetic Study of Celiac Disease in Patients with Multiple Sclerosis in Comparison with Celiac Patients and Healthy Controls

Fateme Barazandeh Ahmadabadi, Bijan Shahbazkhani, Abbas Tafakhori, Asghar Khosravi, Marzie Maserat Mashhadi



Studies have reported the controversial association between multiple sclerosis (MS) and celiac disease (CD). Thus, we aimed to conduct a case control study on patients with MS, CD, and controls to investigate CD in patients with MS by means of comparing CD genetic markers in patients with MS and controls. We also evaluated serological markers in patients with MS.

Materials and Methods:

This is a case control study conducted on 60 patients with MS, 140 patients with CD, and 151 healthy controls in 2015 in Tehran, Iran. HLA typing was done to identify the carriers of the DQB1*02, DQB1*0301, DQA1*05, or DQA1*0201 alleles for HLA-DQ2, DQB1*0302, or DQA1*03 for HLA-DQ8. All data were analyzed using SPSS software (version 23, IBM Corp). Serological markers including anti-gliadin antibodies (AGA) (IgA, IgG), anti-tissue trans glutaminase antibodies (Anti tTG) (IgA, IgG), anti-endomysial antibody (EMA) (IgA, IgG), and total IgA were assessed in MS group by enzyme immunoassays.


The data of 60 patients with MS (26.7% male, mean age=34.83 years), 140 patients with CD (33.6% male, mean age=38.37 years) and 151 controls (48.3% male, mean age=40.43 years) were analyzed. The results of serological markers were not positive in any of the patients with MS. The prevalence of IgA deficiency (IgA≤0.7) was 13.3% in patients with MS. 34 (56.7%) patients with MS, 90 (59.6%) controls, and 135 (96.4%) patients with CD had positive results in either or both HLA DQ2 and DQ8. There was a significant difference in the HLA typing results between the patients with MS and controls with CD group (P<0.001), while comparing the MS group with the controls there was not a significant difference in the result of HLA typing (P=0.69). Four (50%) patients with MS and IgA deficiency had positive DQ2 and/or DQ8.


Our results did not show any correlation between MS and CD, which was similar to other studies.


Multiple sclerosis, Celiac disease, HLA-DQ2, HLA-DQ8

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