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Gastroenterology. 1994 Oct;107(4):1002-11.

Immunization of BALB/c mice against Helicobacter felis infection with Helicobacter pylori urease.

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Division of Gastroenterology, Centre Hospitalier Universitaire Vaudois, Lausanne, Switzerland.



Because Helicobacter pylori is a potentially dangerous human pathogen, the protective potential of oral immunization with H. pylori urease and its subunits was evaluated in an animal model.


Mice were orally immunized with H. pylori sonicate, urease, or recombinant enzymatically inactive urease subunits and then challenged with Helicobacter felis. Control mice were sham-immunized.


H. felis colonization was present 5 days after challenge in 9 of 10 sham-immunized, 6 of 9 sonicate-immunized, and 3 of 10 urease-immunized animals (P = 0.031 vs. sham-immunized). Twelve days after challenge, urease B-immunized mice had a weaker colonization than sham-immunized controls, whereas urease A had no effect. After 70 days, most urease A- and urease B-immunized mice had cleared the colonization (10/17: P = 0.0019; 16/20: P = 0.00002 vs. sham-immunized). In urease B-immunized animals, protection was often associated with corpus gastritis.


Oral immunization with H. pylori urease protects mice against H. felis infection. Enzymatically inactive urease A and B subunits contain protective epitopes. It is unclear whether protection depends on the development of a mononuclear inflammatory response in the gastric corpus. Our observations should encourage the development of a human vaccine.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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