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Increased frequency of micronuclei in peripheral blood lymphocytes of subjects infected withHelicobacter pylori

Mutation Research/Genetic Toxicology and Environmental Mutagenesis
Publication Date
DOI: 10.1016/j.mrgentox.2006.09.012
  • Helicobacter Pylori
  • Micronuclei
  • Human Lymphocytes
  • Genotoxicity


Abstract Epidemiological studies have demonstrated a close association between infection with Helicobacter pylori and the development of gastric carcinoma and mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue lymphomas in humans. The cytokinesis-block micronucleus assay was performed on peripheral blood lymphocytes of H. pylori-infected patients in order to investigate the possible induction of genotoxic damage. The study group consisted of 70 infected subjects including 33 women and 37 men, and 66 healthy controls (37 females and 29 males). Our results indicate that in the infected group the overall frequency of binucleated micronucleated cells (BNMN) per 1000 cells was higher (17.65 ± 1.55) than in the controls (7.39 ± 0.66), this difference being statistically significant. No differences were found between the infected and control groups regarding the cytokinesis-block proliferation index (CBPI). When the effect of different counfounding factors was evaluated, mutivariate statistical analysis revealed that age and alcohol consumption modulated the frequency of BNMN in infected people, and the interaction between alcohol use–smoking–infection also affected the BNMN frequency in H. pylori patients. Our results indicate that infection by H. pylori is associated with an increased level of cytogenetic damage in the cells of the host.

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