News story

Improving lives of those with coeliac disease: apply for funding

Organisations can apply for a share of £750,000 to look at improving diagnosis of coeliac disease, better self-care and gluten-free food production.

Young woman smiles outdoors. By mimagephotography at Shutterstock
You could get a share of £750,000 for projects that help improve the lives of people with coeliac disease.

Coeliac UK and Innovate UK are to invest £750,000 in a joint competition to find ways of improving the lives of people with coeliac disease.

Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disease caused by a reaction to gluten. Symptoms include diarrhoea, constipation, vomiting, stomach cramps, mouth ulcers, fatigue and anaemia. One in 100 people have the condition.

Gluten is found in wheat, rye and barley. Sources in diets can include breads, pastas, flours, cereals, cakes, and biscuits. It is used as an ingredient in other popular foods including fish fingers, sausages, gravies, sauces and soy sauce.

This competition - which includes a £500,000 contribution from Innovate UK and £250,000 from Coeliac UK - is part of a larger campaign to mark the 50th anniversary of Coeliac UK this year and raise £5 million for research into the disease.

Ideas in charity’s priority areas

The competition is seeking ideas in Coeliac UK’s 3 priority areas:

  • improve the diagnosis of coeliac disease, including alternative methods of diagnosis that do not involve ingestion of gluten, and tests that are less invasive than endoscopy and biopsy
  • develop better gluten-free food, including novel ingredients, foods with improved nutrients and flavour, new methods of preservation, and technologies to lower manufacturing costs and improve shelf-life
  • help people to self-manage their condition through digitally-supported health care

Funding is available for feasibility studies, industrial research and experimental development.

Competition information

  • the competition is open, and the deadline for applications is at 9 am on 3 September 2018
  • applications should be made through Coeliac UK
  • projects should normally be business-led and include an SME. Researchers can work in collaboration with business partners
  • we expect feasibility projects to have costs of up to £100,000 and to last between 6 and 12 months
  • we expect industrial research projects to have costs of between £50,000 and £250,000 and to last between 12 and 36 months
  • we expect experimental development projects to have costs of between £50,000 and £250,000 and to last between 6 and 18 months
  • businesses could attract up to 70% of their project costs
Published 17 May 2018