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CAVALCANTE, Meyssa Quezado de Figueiredo et al. Helicobacter pylori vacA and cagA genotypes in patients from northeastern Brazil with upper gastrointestinal diseases. Mem. Inst. Oswaldo Cruz [online]. 2012, vol.107, n.4, pp.561-563. ISSN 0074-0276. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0074-02762012000400021.
Helicobacter pylori causes chronic gastric inflammation and significantly increases the risk of duodenal and gastric ulcer disease and distal gastric carcinoma. In this study, we evaluated the Helicobacter pylori vacA and cagA genotypes in patients from a Brazilian region where there is a high prevalence of gastric cancer. Polymerase chain reaction (PCR) was used to investigate vacA mosaicism and cagA status in the gastric mucosa of 134 H. pylori-positive patients, including 76 with gastritis: 28 with peptic ulcer disease and 30 with gastric cancer. The s1m1 variant was the predominant vacA genotype observed, whereas the s1 allele was more frequently observed in patients with more severe diseases associated with H. pylori infection [p = 0.03, odds ratio (OR) = 5.72, 95% confidence interval (CI) = 1.15-38.60]. Furthermore, all of the s1 alleles were s1b. Mixed vacA m1/m2 strains were found more frequently in patients with gastric cancer and a cagA-positive status was significantly associated with gastric cancer (p = 0.016, OR = 10.36, 95% CI = 1.35-217.31). Patients with gastric cancer (21/21, 100%, p = 0.006) or peptic ulcers (20/21, 95%, p = 0.02) were more frequently colonised by more virulent H. pylori strains compared to gastritis patients (41/61, 67.2%). In conclusion, in the northeastern of Brazil, which is one of the regions with the highest prevalence of gastric cancer in the country, infection with the most virulent H. pylori strains, carrying the cagA gene and s1m1 vacA alleles, predominates and is correlated with more severe H. pylori-associated diseases.
Keywords : H. pylori vacA; cagA gastric diseases.