Increased Detection of Celiac Disease With Measurement of Deamidated Gliadin Peptide Antibody Before Endoscopy

Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2015 Jul;13(7):1278-1284.e1. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2015.01.010. Epub 2015 Jan 26.


Background & aims: Celiac disease is underdiagnosed. Many patients are examined by endoscopy, but celiac disease is missed or not detected. We evaluated the accuracy of finger prick-based point-of-care tests in the detection of celiac disease and developed an algorithm for diagnosis.

Methods: We performed a prospective study of 2 groups of patients with celiac disease evaluated at the Royal Hallamshire Hospital in Sheffield (United Kingdom) from March 2013 through February 2014. In group 1, patients at high risk of celiac disease who tested positive for endomysial antibody (n = 55) were evaluated using the Biocard test (BHR Pharmaceuticals, Nuneaton, UK) and the Celiac Quick Test (Biohit Healthcare UK, Ellesmere Port, UK), which measure antibodies to tissue transglutaminase (anti-tTG), and the Simtomax test (Tillotts Pharma, Rheinfelden, Switzerland), which measures deamidated gliadin peptide antibodies (DGP). Patients in group 2 (508 consecutive patients who underwent an endoscopy examination for any indication) received the DGP test, and also were evaluated using a diagnostic algorithm that incorporated results from the DGP test and data on symptoms. In both groups, point-of-care tests were taken at the time of endoscopy and results were compared with results from histologic analyses of duodenal biopsy specimens from all patients.

Results: In group 1, the DGP test identified patients with celiac disease with 94.4% sensitivity, the Celiac Quick Test identified patients with 77.8% sensitivity (P = .03 vs the DGP test), and the Biocard test identified patients with 72.2% sensitivity (P = .008 vs the DGP test). In group 2, the DGP test identified patients with celiac disease with 92.7% sensitivity (95% confidence interval, 83.0-97.3), 85.2% specificity (95% confidence interval, 81.5-88.3), a positive predictive value of 49.2% (95% confidence interval, 40.3-58.2), and a negative predictive value of 98.7% (95% confidence interval, 96.8-99.5). Measurement of serum anti-tTG identified patients with celiac disease with 91.2% sensitivity (95% confidence interval, 81.1-96.4), 87.5% specificity (95% confidence interval, 84.0-90.4), a positive predictive value of 53.0% (95% confidence interval, 43.6-62.2), and a negative predictive value of 98.5% (95% confidence interval, 96.5-99.4). The algorithm identified patients with celiac disease with 98.5% sensitivity; its use could reduce duodenal biopsies by 35%.

Conclusions: In a prospective study, a test for DGP identified patients with celiac disease with similar levels of sensitivity and specificity as standard serologic analysis of anti-tTG. Use of the DGP test before endoscopy could increase the accuracy of the diagnosis of celiac disease. Further studies, in lower-prevalence populations, are required to assess the impact of the test in clinical practice.

Keywords: Case Finding; Diagnostic Assay; Finger Prick Test; Missed Diagnosis.

Publication types

  • Evaluation Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Antibodies / blood*
  • Celiac Disease / diagnosis*
  • Endoscopy, Gastrointestinal
  • Female
  • Gliadin / immunology*
  • Humans
  • Immunoassay / methods*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Point-of-Care Systems
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Prospective Studies
  • Sensitivity and Specificity
  • United Kingdom
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies
  • Gliadin