Modes of adherence of Helicobacter pylori to gastric surface epithelium in gastroduodenal disease: A possible sequence of events leading to internalisation

Nikos Papadogiannakis, Roger Willén, Birgitta Carlén, Svante Sjöstedt, Torkel Wadström, Adel Gad

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Abstract

We have investigated various modes of adherence of Helicobacter pylori to the human gastric epithelium, using transmission electron microscopy, in biopsies from nine patients with peptic ulcer disease and from four patients with chronic active gastritis. H. pylori was demonstrated in abundance in all cases within the surface mucous layer. In all ulcer- and in one out of four gastritis patients H. pylori was shown in close proximity to the gastric epithelium, with concurrent alterations in the configuration of microvilli and the apical cytoplasmic region of gastric cells. Previously described modes of H. pylori adherence were confirmed, such as loose attachment with fibrillar-like strands, firm attachment with pedestal formation, invasion in the intercellular spaces, and invagination with cup formation. Moreover, in many cases a fusion between the bacterial outer layer and gastric cell membranes was evident. In four cases (31; three with active and one with past ulcer disease) viable H. pylori was found in the cytoplasm of gastric mucous cells. Our results support the hypothesis that the different modes of adherence of H. pylori represent a stepwise, possibly sequential, process which in a significant number of cases leads to internalisation of the organism. The invariable occurrence of adhesion and more frequent internalisation of H. pylori in ulcer patients may suggest a link with the pathogenesis of peptic ulcer disease.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)439-447
Journal APMIS : acta pathologica, microbiologica, et immunologica Scandinavica
Volume108
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Bibliographical note

The information about affiliations in this record was updated in December 2015.
The record was previously connected to the following departments: Pathology, (Lund) (013030000), Division of Medical Microbiology (013250400)

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Microbiology in the medical area
  • Cancer and Oncology

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