Molecular detection of Helicobacter pylori and its genotypic antimicrobial resistance patterns in dyspeptic Mozambican patients

Helicobacter. 2023 Aug;28(4):e13000. doi: 10.1111/hel.13000. Epub 2023 Jun 20.


Background: Helicobacter pylori strains show a high level of genotypic diversity and express several genes that contribute to their pathogenicity and resistance. In Mozambique, there is lack of information regarding its resistance pattern to antibiotics. In this study, we aimed to investigate the prevalence of H. pylori and its genotypic resistance to clarithromycin, metronidazole, and fluoroquinolones in Mozambican dyspeptic patients. Since appropriate eradication should be based on the local resistance rate, our data will guide clinicians in choosing the best drugs for the effective treatment of H. pylori-infected patients.

Methods: This is a cross-sectional descriptive study conducted between June 2017 and June 2020, in which 171 dyspeptic patients were recruited, and through upper gastrointestinal endoscopy, gastric biopsies were collected from those patients. Polymerase chain reaction was performed for the detection of H. pylori and its resistance mechanisms to clarithromycin (23S rRNA), metronidazole (rdxA), and fluoroquinolones (gyrA); mutations conferring resistance to these antibiotics were investigated by sequencing 23S rRNA, rdxA, and gyrA genes.

Results: Of the 171 samples tested, H. pylori was detected in 56.1% (96/171). The clarithromycin resistance rate was 10.4% (the responsible mutations were A2142G and A2143G), the metronidazole resistance rate was 55.2% (4 types of mutations responsible for metronidazole resistance were identified which include, D59N, R90K, H97T, and A118T. However, in many cases, they appeared in combination, with D59N + R90K + A118T being the most frequent combination), and the fluoroquinolones resistance rate was 20% (the responsible mutations were N87I and D91G).

Conclusion: H. pylori infection remains common in dyspeptic Mozambican patients. High resistance to metronidazole and fluoroquinolones requires continuous monitoring of antibiotic resistance and adaptation of therapy to eradicate this infection.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori; Mozambique; antibiotic resistance.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / pharmacology
  • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
  • Clarithromycin / pharmacology
  • Clarithromycin / therapeutic use
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Drug Resistance, Bacterial / genetics
  • Fluoroquinolones / pharmacology
  • Helicobacter Infections* / epidemiology
  • Helicobacter pylori*
  • Humans
  • Metronidazole / pharmacology
  • Metronidazole / therapeutic use
  • Microbial Sensitivity Tests
  • Mozambique
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S / genetics


  • Anti-Bacterial Agents
  • Clarithromycin
  • Metronidazole
  • RNA, Ribosomal, 23S
  • Fluoroquinolones