Big news!

The University of Maryland’s Center for Celiac Research is already known as a leading figure in the gluten-free community. Now, thanks to a $45 million gift, the university is poised to play an even bigger role.

Money

The gift comes from a grateful patient who was diagnosed with celiac disease, and will be used to establish a new research center focusing on autoimmune diseases. There’s a great article, including a video from the news conference, on the University of Maryland – Baltimore’s website. To sum it up, though:

  • The center will focus on three areas: celiac disease, mucosal biology, and microbe /host interaction
  • At the start there will be 13 researchers, but the center hopes to ultimately employ up to 200 people
  • In addition to celiac disease, the center hopes to shed light on multiple sclerosis, Type 1 diabetes, asthma, and others
  • Research into celiac disease lends itself to a wider understanding of other autoimmune disorders, because it is the only one with a clear, known trigger (gluten)
  • Dr. Alessio Fasano, who currently directs the Mucosal Biology Research Center and the Center for Celiac Research, will direct the new center
  • The gift is the largest private donation in the University of Maryland’s history

You can learn more about the Center for Celiac Research on their site, which also has great resources for every facet of the gluten-free community.