An association between Helicobacter pylori infection and vitamin B12 deficiency has been recently reported.
Researchers determined whether serum vitamin B12 levels in non-vitamin B12 deficient healthy adults correlate with evidence of H. pylori infection. Their study is published in the February issue of the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology.
The research team assessed 133 adults who met the following exclusion criteria:
- history of H. pylori eradication or antacid use
- liver disease
- inflammatory bowel disease
- previous gastrointestinal surgery
- a vegetarian diet
- or multivitamin supplementation
The team measured their complete blood count, serum vitamin B12, gastrin, folic acid, and H. pylori IgG antibodies.
Subjects with vitamin B12 ≤ 145 ng/ml (deficient range) were excluded.
|Vitamin B12 levels did not correlate with age.|
|Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology|
The researchers found that 72% of subjects were seropositive for H. pylori IgG antibodies (HP+).
However, the age of HP(+) subjects did not differ from that of seronegative subjects (HP-).
They also found that the prevalence of HP seropositivity was significantly higher among subjects with borderline (>145-180 pg/ml) or low normal (>180-250 pg/ml) vitamin B12 levels than among those with vitamin B12 >250 pg/ml.
The team did not find that vitamin B12 levels correlated with age.
Gastrin levels (pg/ml) did not differ significantly between groups; 70.2 in HP(+) versus 56 in HP(-).
Drs Ora Shuval-Sudai and Esther Granot conclude, “The higher prevalence of H. pylori infection among subjects with serum vitamin B12 levels that are within the lower end of the normal range suggests a causal relationship between H. pylori infection and vitamin B12 levels in healthy adults”.