Colonisation with Helicobacter pylori may influence susceptibility to gastroduodenal injury and ulceration in patients taking non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs). The aim of this study was to determine if Helicobacter pylori colonisation altered eicosanoid synthesis by gastric mucosa in these patients. Sixty five patients with long-standing NSAID intake and 23 control subjects underwent endoscopy. In vitro gastric antral biopsies were stimulated by vortex mixing and eicosanoid measurements determined by radioimmunoassay. Helicobacter pylori colonisation was determined by a CLO test (a gel based rapid urease test) and histological assessment. Median prostaglandin E2 synthesis by gastric mucosa was 61.0 (interquartile range: 19.2-73.1) pg/mg in control subjects colonised with Helicobacter pylori compared with 46.5 (23.3-65.5) pg/mg in Helicobacter pylori negative subjects. This was not significantly different. Treatment with NSAIDs was associated with a significant difference (p < 0.001) in prostaglandin E2 (PGE2) synthesis between those colonised with Helicobacter pylori (37.5(22.0-77.3) pg/mg) compared with patients not infected (12.6(7.0-19.3) pg/mg). Values in patients taking NSAIDs who were colonised were not different from control subjects. Synthesis of PGE2 was strongly associated with type B (chronic active), but not type C (chemical) gastritis. Dyspeptic symptoms were more common in subject colonised with Helicobacter pylori (p < 0.002) and were associated with higher PGE2 synthesis. In patients taking NSAIDs Helicobacter pylori colonisation removes rather then enhances depression of PGE2 synthesis associated with NSAIDs and may promote dyspepsia associated with ulcers and prevent superficial mucosal injury.
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