Helicobacter pylori is a microorganism able to stimulate a robust inflammatory and systemic immune response.
Professor Maria Pina Dore and colleagues from Italy evaluated autoimmune markers in dyspeptic patients positive for H pylori infection.
The research team compared the patients to a control group of non-H pylori-infected subjects.
The kinetics of cryoglobulins and autoantibodies was evaluated after treatment of the infection.
The team studied dyspeptic patients with active H pylori infection and age- and sex-matched healthy H pylori- negative controls.
| Autoantibodies and antithyroid antibodies were observed in 12 patients|
Markers of immunity were compared, in H pylori-infected patients before, 6 months and 1 year after the end of therapy.
The researchers also compared results between those with and without successful eradication therapy.
The research team reported that 86 individual were entered into the study, of which 43 were H pylori-infected.
H pylori-infected patients had higher levels of immunoglobulin G and/or immunoglobulin A and/or immunoglobulin M.
The team detected circulating immune complexes and cryoglobulins in patients more often than controls.
The researchers observed autoantibodies in 12 of patients vs 5 in controls, and antithyroid antibodies in 12 patients.
Lower levels of C3 and/or C4 complement fractions were observed in infected patients with respect to controls.
After 1 year follow-up, the team noted that markers of autoimmunity improved in patients eradicated for H pylori infection in comparison to failed therapy.
In addition, the team reported that no patient developed a clinical autoimmune disorder.
Professor Pina Dore's team conclude, “Additional studies are necessary to ascertain the clinical significance of the modifications of autoimmune markers in patients with H pylori infection.”