The course of chronic gastritis in the antrum and body was followed up for 7 years in 112 patients with gastric ulcer (GU). As controls served 155 subjects collected at random from the same geographical area. At the start of the study (first examination) there was a slight predominance of antrum gastritis in the series, but during the follow-up period (second examination at 4 years (61 out of 112 patients) and third examination at 7 years (39 out of 112 patients] a distinct body gastritis gradually predominated in GU patients. The healing tendency of active ulcer was accompanied by a more pronounced progression of body gastritis. The rate of body gastritis progression was very rapid and was calculated to be 11-fold as compared with that in the population at large. No immunological phenomena were associated with the body atrophy process.