Gluten proteins are characterized by the high glutamine and proline content; thus, during gluten digestion, several resistant peptides are produced. Some of them contain sequences that, in celiac patients, are able to trigger an immunological reaction. The prolamin fraction of different wheat samples was submitted to in vitro digestion, and the peptides generated were analysed using liquid chromatography coupled to mass spectrometry techniques. Several wheat varieties were analysed, showing large differences in the production of immunotoxic peptides on digestion. After simulated gastrointestinal digestion of wheat, emerged that peptides containing sequences known to elicit the adaptive immune response derived mainly from γ‐gliadin, whereas peptides containing sequences involved in the innate immune response were distributed among α‐gliadin and γ‐gliadin and low‐molecular‐weight glutenins. From the results, no major differences due to the different cultivation places were observed. On the other hand, statistically significant differences are present among the genotypes tested, especially for the immunogenic peptides. The possible development would be the selection of wheat genotypes with reduced amount of immunogenic sequences, to reduce the exposure of people and decrease the risk of new cases of disease.
Part of the book: Wheat Improvement, Management and Utilization