Immune System and Gut Abnormalities in Patients With Common Variable Immunodeficiency With and Without Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Brief Title

Immune System and Gut Abnormalities in Patients With Common Variable Immunodeficiency With and Without Gastrointestinal Symptoms

Official Title

The Immune Basis for the Gastrointestinal Complications of Common Variable Immunodeficiency

Brief Summary

      This study will determine whether people with common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) with
      and without gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms have gut abnormalities (inflammation or loss of
      function) and changes in immune system cells and chemicals in the blood and gut. People with
      CVID have decreased levels of serum immunoglobulin IgG and IgA. Patients have sinus, lung and
      other infections, and many also have stomach and intestinal problems, such as chronic
      diarrhea, inability to absorb nutrition from food, and intestinal infections caused by

      CVID patients with gastrointestinal symptoms 10 years of age and older may be eligible for
      this study; CVID patients without gastrointestinal symptoms 18 years of age and older will be
      enrolled as control subjects. Candidates will be screened with a review of their medical
      records, a medical history and physical examination, HIV blood test, stool sample, and
      hydrogen breath test. The breath test measures the amount of hydrogen in the breath after
      drinking sugar water, showing the digestive effects of bacteria in the upper intestine.

      Participants will be admitted to the NIH Clinical Center for several days to undergo the
      following procedures:

        -  Medical history and physical examination

        -  Blood tests

        -  Urine and stool samples

        -  48-hour stool fat collection measures the amount of undigested fat in the stool to
           determine the ability of the gut to digest and absorb fat in the diet

        -  D-Xylose absorption test measures the ability of a sugar compound to travel across the
           lining of the intestine to determine the ability of the gut to absorb nutrients

        -  Upper endoscopy a thin flexible lighted tube is advanced through the mouth to evaluate
           the esophagus, stomach and beginning of the small intestine

        -  Lower endoscopy a thin lighted tube is advanced through the rectum to evaluate the colon

      Identification of GI abnormalities associated with changes in immune response in CVID
      patients will help in developing and testing new treatments for this disease.

Detailed Description

      Common variable immunodeficiency (CVID) is a clinically heterogeneous disorder characterized
      by decreased serum immunoglobulin IgG and IgA levels. In addition to chronic or recurrent
      sinopulmonary infections, many patients develop gastrointestinal manifestations that can be
      disabling or fatal. Data suggest that these gut abnormalities have a primary immune basis,
      implicating T cells primarily, and are not related to the infectious complications of CVID.
      Currently there is no standard therapy for the associated gastrointestinal disease outside of
      empiric nutritional intervention for weight loss and non-specific anti-diarrheal agents. In
      addition there is no data about the prevalence of gastrointestinal abnormalities in CVID
      patients who have no overt gastrointestinal symptoms.

      The objectives of this study are to characterize the gastrointestinal abnormalities that
      occur in CVID patients and correlate this with the immunophenotype and cytokine secretion of
      peripheral blood and lamina propria lymphocytes and monocytes. CVID patients with
      gastrointestinal symptoms of malabsorption/maldigestion and chronic diarrhea will be targeted
      for study. We will also include a group of patients without gastrointestinal symptoms to
      provide an estimate of background prevalence and severity of gut abnormalities. Subjects will
      undergo a standard immunologic workup including peripheral blood lymphocyte marker
      phenotyping and cytokine responses as well as tests of gastrointestinal absorption,
      examination of gut histology by endoscopic biopsy, and measurement of gut mucosal cytokine
      expression. Analysis variables will include clinical (weight, stool frequency, results of gut
      absorption tests), laboratory (lymphocyte and cytokine assays), and gut abnormalities
      (histology scores and specific lesions).

Study Type



Common Variable Immunodeficiency


* Includes publications given by the data provider as well as publications identified by National Clinical Trials Identifier (NCT ID) in Medline.

Recruitment Information

Estimated Enrollment


Start Date

April 16, 2001

Completion Date

July 10, 2013

Eligibility Criteria


        Must have a verifiable diagnosis of common variable immune deficiency specifically a
        decrease both in IgG and at least one other Ig isotype to below two standard deviations of
        normal control levels.

        Must be age 10 years old or older for patients with gastrointestinal symptoms or age 18
        years or older in the absence of gastrointestinal symptoms.

        Must be free of active sinopulmonary or other infection at time of enrollment.

        Must have negative results on stool examination for culture of enteric pathogens
        (Salmonella, Shigella, Yersinia, Campylobacter, Vibrio, E. Coli O157/H7), Clostridia
        difficile toxin assay, enteric parasites and their ova (including Cryptosporidia,
        Cyclospora, Microsporidia and Giardia (by stool EIA)).

        Adults who are unable to provide initial or on-going consent may participate in this study.


        Absence of other antibody deficiency states including X-linked agammaglobulinemia, hyper
        IgM syndrome, selective deficiency of IgG subclass, and Ig heavy chain gene deletions.

        Use of immunomodulating drugs within the following times prior to enrollment: daily
        corticosteroids (4 weeks), azathioprine/6-MP, cyclosporine, methotrexate, or FK506 (3
        months). The use of short-term or single dose corticosteroids as a pretreatment regimen for
        IVIG is acceptable.

        Positive test for anti-HIV.

        Significant systemic or major disease including congestive heart failure, coronary artery
        disease, cerebrovascular disease and pre-existing or recent onset CNS demyelinating
        disorder, pulmonary disease, renal failure, organ transplantation, decompensated liver
        disease, serious psychiatric disease, or malignancy that in the opinion of the investigator
        would preclude successful endoscopic evaluation.

        Pregnancy, to avoid endoscopies without a strictly therapeutic intent in this relatively
        high risk population.




10 Years - N/A

Accepts Healthy Volunteers



Ivan J Fuss, M.D., , 

Location Countries

United States

Location Countries

United States

Administrative Informations



Organization ID


Secondary IDs


Study Sponsor

National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

Study Sponsor

Ivan J Fuss, M.D., Principal Investigator, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID)

Verification Date

July 10, 2013