Gluten-free Genetically Modified Wheat?

These days we’re hearing more and more about GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) that are suppose to ward off insects, be more bountiful, increase nutrition, and use less water.

Is there hope that can help those of us with Celiac Disease?

Yes, says a January 9th, 2010 article in Food Safety News.

Dr. Diter von Wettstein

The article states that Dr. Diter von Wettstein of Washington State University has received a further $2 million in research grants to continue his research on GMO gluten-free wheat. Specifically, his research is currently focussed on removing the gliadins and gliadin-type prolamins from the gluten protein in wheat as it is the gliadins in the gluten protein that can’t be digested by Celiacs.

Apparently, research to date has already uncovered a lysine-rich barley mutant that lacks the gliadin-type and low-molecular-weight glutenins. The task is now to try to use genetic methods to remove the gliadins and low-molecular glutenins in similar wheat grain.

Arcadia Biosciences has been engaged by von Wettstein to screen a large variety of wheat to find gene mutants that affect the celiac-triggering protein types.