Limited role of lipopolysaccharide Lewis antigens in adherence of Helicobacter pylori to the human gastric epithelium

Infect Immun. 2003 May;71(5):2876-80. doi: 10.1128/iai.71.5.2876-2880.2003.


In vitro and in vivo studies from various groups have suggested that Helicobacter pylori lipopolysaccharide (LPS) Lewis x (Le(x)) antigens mediate bacterial adhesion. We have now reevaluated this hypothesis by studying the adherence in situ of H. pylori strain 11637 and its corresponding Le(x)-negative rfbM mutant to human gastric mucosa from patients (n = 22) with various gastric pathologies. Significant binding of the parent strain was observed in only 8 out of 22 sections; in four out of eight patients, the Le(x)-negative mutant bound less well. One of these four patients displayed no gastric abnormalities, and the other three showed dysplasia, metaplasia, and adenocarcinoma, respectively; hence, we are unable to define the circumstances under which LPS-mediated adhesion takes place. We conclude that H. pylori LPS plays a distinct but minor role in adhesion.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Adhesion*
  • Gastric Mucosa / microbiology*
  • Helicobacter Infections / etiology
  • Helicobacter pylori / pathogenicity*
  • Humans
  • Lewis X Antigen / physiology*
  • Lipopolysaccharides / chemistry
  • Lipopolysaccharides / immunology*


  • Lewis X Antigen
  • Lipopolysaccharides