Sliced Dread 

Gluten causes countless Americans crippling stomach pain. Why don't they know it?

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Their work is entirely funded by the National Institutes of Health, but competition is fierce for the crumbs spent on celiac, and the money available is insufficient to attract new researchers that the field "desperately needs," according to Khosla. Often, the NIH looks to the pharmaceutical industry to pick up where academic researchers leave off, but the absence of an existing celiac drug and the small number of official diagnoses on the books make it hard for Big Pharma to justify the investment to shareholders.

Two companies are looking into a pill, a supplement to help celiacs metabolize gluten, but that'll take at least another six to eight years to develop, Monarch says. "For a disease that affects one out of 133 people in this country, that's latent in many people, you'd think our federal government would be pouring money into this," Switkes said. "But, it's not."

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