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Am J Gastroenterol. 1998 Aug;93(8):1277-85.

Effects of Helicobacter pylori on gastritis, pentagastrin-stimulated gastric acid secretion, and meal-stimulated plasma gastrin release in the absence of peptic ulcer disease.

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Gastrointestinal Unit, Inselspital, Berne, Switzerland.



There is strong evidence accumulating that chronic infection with Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) interferes with inhibitory pathways of the regulation of acid secretion. The increase in maximum acid output (MAO), and the increase in the sensitivity of the parietal cell to gastrin commonly observed in patients suffering from duodenal ulcer disease (DU), however, remains largely unexplained. Insufficient evidence is available concerning how these parameters are influenced by H. pylori infection in patients not suffering from peptic ulcer disease (PUD) and how they are related to H. pylori-induced gastritis. The aim of this study was to compare basal gastric acid secretion (BAO), MAO, and the sensitivity of the parietal cell to gastrin in H. pylori-positive and H. pylori-negative patients not suffering from PUD, and to study the relationship with their individual postprandial gastrin release and the degree of gastric antral and corpus gastritis.


H. pylori status was assessed by CLO test and histology (two biopsies each from the antrum and the corpus) in 14 H. pylori-positive and 16 H. pylori-negative nonulcer patients of comparable age, weight and gender. Gastritis score was assessed by a pathologist, who was unaware of the acid secretory data. Following determination of BAO, the relation of pentagastrin and gastric acid secretion was established with a cumulative pentagastrin dose response curve for the dose range 0.03-6.0 microg/kg(-1) h(-1) and MAO (Vmax) and pentagastrin sensitivity (ED50) were determined. Basal and postprandial gastrin release was measured by radioimmunoassay.


There was a significant higher gastritis score in the H. pylori-positive compared with the H. pylori-negative subjects. The dose response curves of the pentagastrin stimulated gastric acid secretion were not different between H. pylori-positive and H. pylori-negative groups. No correlation was seen between the gastritis score, basal acid output (BAO) peak acid output (PAO), maximum acid output (MAO), ED50 values and the plasma gastrin values. There was, however, a considerable larger variation of the PAO and MAO data of the H. pylori-infected subjects and >50% of the respective data was above or below the relatively low range of the respective values of the noninfected subjects.


H. pylori-induced gastritis does not regularly enhance maximum acid output in nonulcer patients, nor does it modify the sensitivity of the parietal cell to gastrin. H. pylori infection is thus unlikely to be directly responsible for an increase of these parameters in DU disease. Our data support, however, the concept that chronic H. pylori infection can either enhance or attenuate maximum acid secretory capacity in certain subgroups of patients.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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