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, 66 (1), 39-51

Implication of Gastrin in cyclooxygenase-2 Expression in Helicobacter Pylori Infected Gastric Ulceration


Implication of Gastrin in cyclooxygenase-2 Expression in Helicobacter Pylori Infected Gastric Ulceration

S J Konturek et al. Prostaglandins Other Lipid Mediat.


Gastroduodenal ulcerations have worldwide distribution and the infection with Helicobacter pylori (HP) has been implicated in pathogenesis of this disease. The HP infection is usually accompanied by hypergastrinemia and enhanced generation of prostaglandins (PG), both implicated in the pathogenesis of peptic ulcerations but no study has been undertaken to assess the relationship between the HP infection and coexpression of gastrin and cyclooxygenases (COX), the rate limiting enzymes in the PG production. Since HP infection, usually accompanying peptic ulcerations, results in increased release of gastrin, a potent gastric mitogen that might be capable to induce COX-2 and to generate PG, we decided 1) to compare the seroprevalence of HP and its cytotoxic protein, CagA, in gastric ulcer patients with those in age- and gender-matched controls; 2) to determine the gene expression of gastrin and its receptors (CCK(B)-R) at the margin of gastric ulcer and in the mucosa of antrum and corpus before and after successful eradication of HP, 3) to assess the plasma levels and gastric luminal contents of gastrin before and after HP eradication and 4) to examine the mRNA and enzyme protein expression of COX-1 and COX-2 as well as the PGE2 generation in ulcer margin tissue and gastric antral and fundic mucosa before and after the HP eradication. The trial material included 20 patients with gastric ulcer and 40 age- and gender-matched controls. Anti-HP and anti-CagA IgG seroprevalence was estimated by specific antisera using ELISA tests. Gene expressions of gastrin, CCK(B)-R, COX-1 and COX-2 were examined using RT-PCR with beta-actin as a reference and employing Western blotting for COX-2 expression, while gastrin and PGE2 were measured by RIA. All gastric ulcers were located at smaller curvature within the antral mucosal area. The seroprevalence of HP, especially that expressing CagA, was significantly higher in gastric ulcers (85%) than in controls (62.5%). Both gastrin and CCK(B)-R mRNA were detected by RT-PCR in ulcer margin and gastrin mRNA was overexpressed in remaining antral mucosa, while CCK(B)-R mRNA was overexpressed in fundic mucosa of HP infected patients. Similarly, COX-2 mRNA and protein were found in margin of gastric ulcer and in the HP infected antral and fundic mucosa but not in the mucosa of HP eradicated patients in whom ulcers completely healed and gastrin was expressed only in antrum, CCK(B)-R only in corpus, while COX-1 was detected both in antrum and corpus. HP positive gastric ulcer patients showed about three times higher levels of plasma immunoreactive gastrin and about 50% higher luminal gastrin contents than the HP negative controls and this increased plasma and luminal gastrin was normalized following the HP eradication. A significant fall in gastrin and CCK(B)-R mRNA expression was noticed six weeks after HP eradication in gastric antral and fundic mucosa, while COX-2 mRNA completely disappeared after this treatment. We conclude that 1) HP infected gastric ulcer margin coexpresses gastrin, its receptors (CCK(B)-R), and COX-2; 2) HP infection may be implicated in gastric ulceration via increased release of gastrin that could be responsible for the overexpression of COX-2 that in turn could help ulcer healing through the stimulation of mucosal cell growth, restoration of the glandular structure and angiogenesis in the ulcer area and 3) gastrin produced in HP infected antral mucosa seems to be involved in the induction of COX-2 and PG production by this enzyme and this may contribute to the ulcer healing.

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