The influence of the eradication of Helicobacter pylori on gastric ghrelin, appetite, and body mass index in patients with peptic ulcer disease

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Background and Aim

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) infection has been known to influence the gastric leptin and ghrelin secretion, for which the exact pathogenic role has not been documented yet. This study was designed to investigate the influence of H. pylori eradication on plasma or gastric levels of ghrelin, body mass index (BMI), and resultant levels of appetite in patients with peptic ulcer disease.


Twenty-two patients with H. pylori-associated active duodenal or gastric ulcer were treated with 7 weeks of antisecretory medication followed with 7 days of eradication regimen. The plasma and tissue ghrelin levels, tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-α) mRNA, BMI, and appetite scale were checked before and after treatment. An additional endoscopic examination was conducted in 10 patients taking both ulcer treatment and H. pylori eradication.


Gastric ghrelin mRNA expression was significantly increased after either ulcer healing or H. pylori eradication, whereas gastric TNF-α mRNA expression was decreased after ulcer treatment and H. pylori eradication. In parallel with these changes, the visual analog scales for hunger and prospective food consumption were significantly increased after ulcer healing and H. pylori eradication. An increase in BMI was not statistically related to ulcer healing and H. pylori eradication therapy. In the subgroup analysis of 10 patients performed with additional endoscopic examination, ulcer treatment was associated with increased plasma ghrelin level and tissue ghrelin expression irrelevant to H. pylori eradication.


Restored tissue levels of ghrelin and improved status of appetite was achieved with gastric ulcer healing and H. pylori eradication.

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