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J Infect Dis. 1986 Apr;153(4):658-63.

Campylobacter pyloridis and gastritis: association with intercellular spaces and adaptation to an environment of mucus as important factors in colonization of the gastric epithelium.


Stomach biopsy specimens from greater than 40 individuals with Campylobacter pyloridis-associated gastritis were examined by light and electron microscopy. The bacteria were consistently seen in two locations: within the gastric mucus and associated with intercellular junctions of gastric epithelial cells. C. pyloridis is suggested to be one of a broad group of spiral bacteria that are adapted to the peculiar niche provided by intestinal mucus. The spiral morphology and the form of motility of these organisms give them a selective advantage in a viscous environment. This point has been demonstrated in vitro by measurement of the velocity of clinical isolates in solutions of methyl cellulose of varying viscosity. The localization of C. pyloridis close to intercellular junctions is proposed to be due to the presence of preferred metabolites or growth factors, e.g., urea and hemin. All isolates show an extremely high urease activity and require hemin for growth.

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