Blood testing links common foods and IBS

July 13, 2005

Researchers using comparison trials determined that irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) patients have elevated food-specific IgG4 antibodies to common foods such as wheat, beef, pork, lamb, and soya bean. These findings are published in the July issue of The American Journal of Gastroenterology.

The results suggest that food hypersensitivities play a role in the pathophysiology of IBS and the observations made are consistent for three subgroups of IBS tested (diarrhea, constipation and alternators). No significant difference was observed in skin prick testing or IgE antibody titers to these food antigens in IBS patients.

"Symptoms from the irritable bowel syndrome can compromise the quality life," states corresponding author Dr. Devinder Kumar of St. George's Hospital in London. "With this simple test, we have scientifically shown that these symptoms may be due to the body's response to what we eat in our daily diet. It opens up a new avenue for the management for this large and complex group of patients."

Current research shows that the prevalence of food hypersensitivities in the general population is estimated at about 5%, and up to 65% of IBS patients attribute their symptoms to food allergies. Since this study has been conducted, the researchers have now performed a diet exclusion study based on the findings of the food hypersensitivity test and "preliminary results are very encouraging."
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This study is published in the July issue of The American Journal of Gastroenterology. Media wishing to receive a PDF of the article contact medicalnews@bos.blackwellpublishing.net.

Devinder Kumar, PhD, FRCS is Professor of Gastro-Intestinal Surgery at St. George's Hospital Medical School in London. Dr. Kumar can be reached for questions and interviews at dkumar@sgul.ac.uk.

About The American Journal of Gastroenterology
The American Journal of Gastroenterology, the official publication of the American College of Gastroenterology, is THE clinical journal for all practicing gastroenterologists, hepatologists and GI endoscopists. With an impact factor of 4.716, it is the authoritative clinical source in the field of gastroenterology. With a broad-based, rigorous, interdisciplinary approach, the journal presents the latest important information in the field of gastroenterology including original manuscripts, meta-analyses and reviews, health economic papers, debates and consensus statements of clinical relevance in gastroenterology. The reports will highlight new observations and original research, results with innovative treatments and all other topics relevant to clinical gastroenterology. Case reports highlighting disease mechanisms or particularly important clinical observations and letters on articles published in the Journal are included.

About Blackwell Publishing
Blackwell Publishing is the world's leading society publisher, partnering with more than 600 academic and professional societies. Blackwell publishes over 750 journals and 600 text and reference books annually, across a wide range of academic, medical, and professional subjects.

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