Genetic etiology of gastric carcinoma: I. Chronic atrophic gastritis

Genet Epidemiol. 1986;3(4):213-24. doi: 10.1002/gepi.1370030402.


Scientific evidence has accumulated to show that chronic atrophic gastritis (CAG) is a precursor of gastric carcinoma, especially its intestinal histologic type; thus the etiology of CAG is of interest. Data on 110 families (557 individuals) collected as part of a large cohort from the Narino region of Colombia, South America, are analyzed to determine the familiality of CAG as a risk factor, and the possible involvement of a major gene in its etiology. We found that age and having an affected mother are important risk factors. In the sample, 45% are affected; 56% of individuals above 30 are affected, whereas only 28% of those 30 and under are affected; 48% of those with affected mothers are affected, but only 7% of those with unaffected mothers are affected. A positive spouse association was confounded with age. Sex and an affected father are not significant risk factors. The genetic (segregation) analysis showed Mendelian transmission of a recessive autosomal gene with penetrance dependent on age and mother's CAG status. Homozygous recessives account for an estimated 61% of the sampled population and have penetrance reaching 72% at age 30 if the mother is affected, and 41% if the mother is not affected. Carriers and non-carriers, who make up an estimated 39% of the sampled population, have an appreciable estimated risk after age 50. The environment, particularly diet, as the sole determinant of CAG needs reevaluation; some combined action of genes and environment seems more plausible.

Publication types

  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Colombia
  • Family
  • Female
  • Gastritis / genetics*
  • Gastritis, Atrophic / epidemiology
  • Gastritis, Atrophic / genetics*
  • Genes, Recessive*
  • Heterozygote
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Models, Genetic
  • Risk
  • Stomach Neoplasms / epidemiology
  • Stomach Neoplasms / genetics*