Zonulin

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Zonulin is an inflammatory protein that regulates intestinal permeability by opening or closing the tight junctions between cells in the lining of the digestive tract.[1] Zonulin is uncleaved haptoglobin.[2]

Disease risk[edit]

In normal physiology, it provides protection against gut infection. Zonulin is antimicrobial and antimilarial. However, it has been linked increased risk of type 1 diabetes[3], Crohn's disease, inflammatory disease, primary sclerosing cholangitis, and susceptibility to idiopathic Parkinson's disease.[4]

Gluten sensitivity[edit]

Gliadin (glycoprotein present in wheat) activates zonulin, leading to increased intestinal permeability to macromolecules. Zonulin expression is increased in individuals who have gluten sensitivity, whether or not they have celiac disease.[5] Increased expression may be a risk factor for autoimmune disease.[6]

Learn more[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

<references>
  1. Zonulin and Its Regulation of Intestinal Barrier Function: The Biological Door to Inflammation, Autoimmunity, and Cancer, Alessio Fasano Physiological Reviews Published 1 January 2011 Vol. 91 no. 1, 151-175 DOI: 10.1152/physrev.00003.2008
  2. Haptoglobin gene, Genecards.org
  3. The role of Haptoglobin and its related protein, Zonulin, in inflammatory bowel disease, Tim Vanuytsel, Séverine Vermeire, and Isabelle Cleynen*, Tissue Barriers. 2013 Dec 1; 1(5): e27321.
  4. Haptoglobin gene, Genecards.org
  5. A Protein In The Gut May Explain Why Some Can't Stomach Gluten, NPR, December 9, 2015
  6. Zonulin, regulation of tight junctions, and autoimmune diseases, Alessio Fasano, Ann N Y Acad Sci. Author manuscript; available in PMC 2013 Jul 1.


The information provided at this site is not intended to diagnose or treat any illness.

From MEpedia, a crowd-sourced encyclopedia of ME and CFS science and history