The gram negative, microaerophilic bacterium Helicobacter pylori colonizes the human gastric mucosa and establishes a chronic infection that is tightly associated with atrophic gastritis, peptic ulcer, and gastric carcinoma. Cloning of the H. pylori cytotoxin gene shows that the protein is synthesized as a 140-kD precursor that is processed to a 94-kD fully active toxin. Oral administration to mice of the purified 94-kD protein caused ulceration and gastric lesions that bear some similarities to the pathology observed in humans. The cloning of the cytotoxin gene and the development of a mouse model of human gastric disease will provide the basis for the understanding of H. pylori pathogenesis and the development of therapeutics and vaccines.
Gene structure of the Helicobacter pylori cytotoxin and evidence of its key role in gastric disease.
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J L Telford, P Ghiara, M Dell'Orco, M Comanducci, D Burroni, M Bugnoli, M F Tecce, S Censini, A Covacci, Z Xiang; Gene structure of the Helicobacter pylori cytotoxin and evidence of its key role in gastric disease.. J Exp Med 1 May 1994; 179 (5): 1653–1658. doi: https://doi.org/10.1084/jem.179.5.1653
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