Helicobacter pylori infection of the human stomach is common and typically benign, although a subset of hosts develops severe pathology. Infection occurs in an organ with distinct microenvironments characterized by pronounced differences in the composition of acid-producing parietal cells. In this study, we examine determinants of bacterial tropism to various gastric niches by using germ-free normal and transgenic mice with an engineered parietal cell ablation. Mice were colonized for 8 weeks with a clinical isolate (Hp1) that expresses adhesins recognized by epithelial NeuAcα2,3Galβ1,4 glycan receptors. In normal mice, Hp1 has tropism for a parietal cell-deficient niche where sialylated glycans are expressed by a narrow band of pit cells positioned at the boundary between the squamous epithelium (forestomach) and the proximal glandular epithelium. Lymphoid aggregates that develop in this niche, but not elsewhere in the stomach, were analyzed by GeneChip and quantitative RT-PCR studies of laser capture microdissected mucosa and yielded a series of biomarkers indicative of immune cell activation and maturation. Genetic ablation of parietal cells produced a new source of NeuAcα2,3Galβ1,4 glycans in amplified gastric epithelial lineage progenitors, with accompanying expansion of Hp1 within the glandular epithelium. Lymphoid aggregates that develop in this formerly acid-protected epithelium have molecular features similar to those observed at the forestomach/glandular junction. These findings demonstrate the important roles played by parietal cells and glycan receptors in determining the positioning of H. pylori within the gastric ecosystem, and emphasize the need to consider the evolution of pathology within a given host in a niche-specific context.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America|
|State||Published - Mar 18 2003|
- Adhesin receptors
- Gastric acid
- Germ-free animals
- Immune response