Antral gastrin cell hyperfunction and Helicobacter pylori infection

B. Annibale, G. Rindi, G. D'Ambra, M. Marignani, E. Solcia, C. Bordi, G. Delle Fave

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Background: Antral gastrin cell hyperfunction (AGCH), is a rare cause of duodenal ulcer associated with non-tumour hypergastrinaemia and acid hypersecretion. Aim: To investigate the role of Helicobacter pylori in AGCH. Patients: Twelve AGCH patients and eight H. pylori-positive non-hypergastrinaemic duodenal ulcer patients were compared. Methods: Basal and peak acid outputs, gastrin-stimulation (meal and bombesin) tests, and immunohistochemistry for antral G and D cells were performed. One year after H. pylori eradication, six AGCH patients were again investigated with the same tests. Results: Significantly more basal, and stimulated gastrin and acid secretion, were found in AGCH compared to the H. pylori-positive duodenal ulcer patients (P <0.01). G cell counts were significantly higher in AGCH than in duodenal ulcer patients (118.8, range 58-192.4, vs. 86.1, range 49-184; P <0.05), and the resulting G/D cell ratio was also higher in AGCH patients (4.2, range 2.6-5.6, vs. 3.3, range 1.9-4.3; P <0.05). H. pylori was present; in the gastric mucosa of all 12 AGCH patients. Cure of infection in six AGCH individuals resulted in marked a decrease of gastrin levels associated with a significant (23.7%; P <0.05) decrease of G cell count and an increase (12%; P <0.05) of D cell count. Conclusions: The results indicate that AGCH may result from H. pylori overstimulation of gastrin cell function in patients with some presently undefined, familial predisposition and that an imbalance of the G/D cell ratio may have a role in the genesis of hypergastrinaemia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)607-615
Number of pages9
JournalAlimentary Pharmacology and Therapeutics
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pharmacology (medical)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)


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