What is the pathogenesis of Helicobacter pylori (H pylori) infection?

Updated: Jul 21, 2021
  • Author: Luigi Santacroce, MD; Chief Editor: BS Anand, MD  more...
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Answer

Note the following:

  • H pylori infection causes atrophic and even metaplastic changes in the stomach.

  • The bacterial adhesion appears to result in tyrosine phosphorylation and is specific for gastric cells.

  • The adhesion of H pylori to the gastric cells causes a direct decrease in mucosal levels of glutathione, a fundamental molecule in the maintenance of the cellular redox status and in the molecular regulation of host immune responses. However, the LPS of H pylori may induce the production of autoantibodies that are able to worsen the atrophy in the corpus mucosa and cause a concomitant increase in parietal cell antibodies. Such events are accompanied by a decrease in anti-H pylori immunoglobulin titers. This process leads to a scenario of severe atrophy without bacterial colonization combined with high levels of autoantibodies against gastric parietal cells.

  • A number of reports show the close association between H pylori infection and low-grade gastric MALTomas.

  • Giannakis and colleagues demonstrated that H pylori may adapt to gastric stem cells, influencing their biology and contributing to tumorigenesis of the stomach. [8]


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