Helicobacter pylori infection, vitamin B12 and homocysteine. A review

Dig Dis. 2003;21(3):237-44. doi: 10.1159/000073341.


It has been suggested that there is an association between Helicobacter pylori infection, reduced cobalamin absorption and cobalamin status and, consequently, elevated homocysteine levels. This would offer an explanation why H. pylori infection is associated with coronary heart disease. To date, more than 25 studies have been published that either deal with H. pylori infection and homocysteine, H. pylori infection and cobalamin status, or both. The design of these studies differs widely in terms of definition of H. pylori status, measuring cobalamin status, selection of study cohorts and geographical study areas. Therefore, results are fairly inconclusive at present and do not suggest a major role of H. pylori infection in the development of cobalamin deficiency and elevated homocysteine levels.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anemia, Pernicious / etiology
  • Anemia, Pernicious / microbiology
  • Gastritis, Atrophic / complications
  • Gastritis, Atrophic / microbiology
  • Helicobacter Infections / complications*
  • Helicobacter pylori* / isolation & purification
  • Homocysteine / blood*
  • Humans
  • Intestinal Absorption
  • Vitamin B 12 / metabolism*
  • Vitamin B 12 Deficiency / etiology
  • Vitamin B 12 Deficiency / microbiology


  • Homocysteine
  • Vitamin B 12