Helicobacter pylori infection may be associated with duodenal ulcer (DU) and accompanied by enhanced gastrin release but the mechanism of this H pylori related hypergastrinaemia in DU patients is unclear. Cholecystokinin (CCK) has been implicated in the feedback control of gastrin release and gastric acid secretion in healthy subjects. This study therefore investigated if CCK participates in the impairment of postprandial gastrin release and gastric secretion in six DU patients. Tests were undertaken with and without elimination of endogenous CCK by loxiglumide, a selective CCK-A receptors antagonist, before and after eradication of H pylori with triple therapy (omeprazole, amoxicyllin, bismuth). In H pylori positive DU patients, the post-prandial decline in pH (with median pH 3.5) was accompanied by a pronounced increment in plasma gastrin but the administration of loxiglumide did not affect significantly this postprandial rise in plasma gastrin and gastric pH profile. After eradication of H pylori, the plasma gastrin concentration was reduced while the median postprandial pH was significantly increased (median pH 4.3). The administration of loxiglumide resulted in significantly greater increase in postprandial plasma gastrin and greater decrease in pH (median pH 3.1) in these patients. This study shows that (a) infection with H pylori is accompanied by an enhanced gastrin release and gastric acidity in DU patients, (b) the failure of loxiglumide to affect plasma gastrin or gastric acid secretion in H pylori infected DU patients could be attributed, at least in part, to the failure of endogenous CCK to control gastrin release and gastric secretion by releasing somatostatin, and (c) the test with loxiglumide may be useful in the identification of patients with impaired feedback control of gastrin release and gastric secretion resulting from infection with H pylori.
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