Effect of Helicobacter pylori infection on IL-8, IL-1 and COX-2 expression in patients with chronic gastritis and gastric cancer
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Objective. Helicobacter pylori infection is related to gastric cancer development, and chronic inflammation is presumed to be the main cause. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the influence of H. pylori cagA, vacA, iceA, and babA genotypes on COX-2, IL-1, and IL-8 expression. Material and methods. of the 217 patients included in the study, 26 were uninfected, 127 had chronic gastritis and were H. pylori-positive, and 64 had gastric cancer. Bacterial genotypes were evaluated by polymerase chain reaction (PCR), and the expression values were determined by quantitative real-time PCR and immunohistochemistry. Results. An association was found between the infection with cagA, vacA s1m1 strains and gastric cancer development. Regarding the 3' region of the cagA gene, we also found an association between the infection with cagA EPIYA-ABCCC strains and clinical outcome. Higher levels of IL-8, IL-1, and COX-2 were detected in gastric mucosa from infected patients with chronic gastritis, and they were also associated with the infection by cagA, vacA s1m1 strains. The IL-8 and IL-1 levels decrease significantly from chronic gastritis to gastric cancer, while the relative expression remained unaltered when COX-2 expression was analyzed among patients with gastritis and cancer. Conclusions. Since inflammatory response to H. pylori infection plays an important role in cellular proliferation and gastric mucosal damage, the up-regulation of IL-1, IL-8, and COX-2 in patients with chronic gastritis has an important clinical implication in gastric carcinogenesis.