Affecting about one percent of the U.S. population, celiac disease is a common inflammatory disease of the small intestine and is triggered by the ingestion of gluten, a protein present in wheat, rye, and barley. Currently, the only treatment for celiac disease is complete avoidance of gluten from one’s diet. This can be a challenge however as gluten is common in our food supply. Celiac disease can be quite devastating with symptoms ranging from gastrointestinal distress and intense abdominal pain to skin disorders. People with celiac disease can have a higher risk of malignancies of the intestine.

Former translational investigator Dr. Ingrid Swanson Pultz is working on an exciting new approach to treat celiac disease — an enzyme that can degrade gluten in the stomach before it reaches the intestine and triggers an immune response. We’ve reported before on this award-winning KumaMax candidate oral therapeutic for celiac disease. Below is an informational slide show on the evolution of KumaMax and the future of this designed enzyme as an oral therapeutic for celiac disease.

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For more information on Kumamax, follow the links below:

Computational Design of an Alpha-gliadan Peptidase – Journal of the American Chemical Society

How Military Research on Anthrax Could Lead to a Weapon Against Gluten – NPR

Dr. Pultz speaks at WBBA’s 2014 Life Science Innovation NW (Video)