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Relationship between gastrin cell number, serum, antral mucosa and luminal gastrin concentration and gastric acidity in antral atrophic gastritis.
  1. F Marotta,
  2. K Hayakawa,
  3. Y Mikami,
  4. P Morello,
  5. M Sugai,
  6. T Morita
  1. Department of Surgery, Hirosaki University School of Medicine, Japan.


    The aim of our study was to investigate the relationship between gastrin producing cell density with antral mucosa, luminal and serum gastrin concentration in antral atrophic gastritis. Our study group consisted of 17 patients: six with mild atrophic gastritis, seven with moderate atrophic gastritis and four with severe atrophic gastritis. None of the patients had type-A atrophic gastritis but the body mucosa was affected by superficial gastritis at various extent in some. A group of 15 healthy subjects served as control. All subjects underwent gastroscopic examination with multiple bioptic sampling. Radioimmunoassay was used for gastrin determination and photomicroscopy for gastrin producing cell density assessment. Electron microscopy was used to assess the gastrin producing granule density index. Patients with moderate and severe atrophic gastritis showed a lower gastric acidity and acid output as compared to control. Serum gastrin did not show significant differences among the groups. In moderate and severe atrophic gastritis, gastrin producing cell granule density index, gastrin producing cell density and antral mucosa gastrin concentration were significantly lower when compared with control and decreased with advancing of the severity of atrophic gastritis. In atrophic gastritis, however, the latter two measurements were not correlated. In moderate and severe atrophic gastritis luminal gastrin concentration significantly increased, compared with control, after the severity of atrophic gastritis. Gastrin producing cell granule density index and luminal gastrin concentration showed a significant correlation with gastric pH. These data suggest that in antral atrophic gastritis with reduced gastric acidity, the decrement of gastrin producing cells is followed by gastrin producing cell hyperfunction with increased luminal release of gastrin.

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