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Scand J Gastroenterol. 2007 Jul;42(7):821-6.

Anti-Saccharomyces cerevisiae antibodies in coeliac disease.

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  • 1Research Unit (03UR/07-02), Faculty of Pharmacy, Monastir, Tunisia.



To evaluate, retrospectively, the frequency of anti-Saccharomyces cerevisiae antibodies (ASCA) in patients with coeliac disease.


ASCA, IgG and IgA were determined by ELISA in sera of 238 coeliac patients. The patients were divided into three groups: group I - 125 untreated patients; group II - 42 patients under a strict gluten-free diet (GFD); and group III - 71 patients who did not comply with a GFD. Sera of 80 healthy blood donors served as controls.


The frequency of ASCA (IgG or IgA) was significantly higher in untreated coeliac patients than in the control group (27.2% versus 3.7%, p=10(-5)). In 238 coeliac patients, the frequency of ASCA was significantly higher in adults than in children (35.4% versus 21.1%, p=0.01). In group III, the frequency of ASCA was significantly higher in adults than in children (60% versus 26.1%, p=0.004). In 238 coeliac patients, ASCA IgG were significantly more frequent than ASCA IgA in both children (19% versus 6.3%, p=0.001) and adults (33.3% versus 12.5%, p=5.10(-4)). In children, ASCA IgG were negative in group II and positive in 20% of group I (p=0.01). In adults, the frequency of ASCA IgG was also significantly lower in group II than in group I (9.5% versus 34%, p=0.03).


A high frequency of ASCA has been found in coeliac patients. The frequency of ASCA was not statistically different between patients with successful adherence to GFD and healthy controls.

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