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Gluten and the brain

RC 2017 7

Biography

Professor Marios Hadjivassiliou is a Consultant Neurologist with an interest in the neurological manifestations of systemic disease, the ataxias and peripheral neuropathies. His primary research is in the neurological manifestations of gluten related diseases, an area that he studied initially for his MD thesis and which has become the focus of his research career for the last 20 years. His pioneering research has led to the definition of previously unrecognised disease entities including gluten ataxia and gluten neuropathy. He runs weekly clinics for patients with neurological problems related to gluten sensitivity and a weekly ataxia clinic, receiving referrals from all over the UK and internationally. He is the director of the Sheffield Ataxia Centre, accredited by Ataxia UK as an Ataxia Centre of Excellence, one of only three in the UK, and is a founding member of the Sheffield Institute of Gluten Related Diseases (SIGReD).

Abstract

The presentation concentrates on the latest research on neurological manifestations of gluten related diseases. The aim is to familiarise health professionals with the commonest neurological manifestations in an attempt to increase awareness and aid diagnosis. Data on the frequency of neurological dysfunction (including cognitive deficits) in patients with classic coeliac disease presentation (assessed with brain imaging, neurological and neuropsychological evaluation) will be compared with patients presenting purely with neurological dysfunction. In addition the concept of Non Coeliac Gluten Sensitivity, which in fact was first reported in the context of neurological presentations, will be discussed, again with emphasis on the neurological manifestations and the role of serological biomarkers in the diagnosis. Relevant aspects of the pathophysiology will be covered that may explain why gluten sensitivity is a spectrum and why we observe such diverse manifestations.

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