BackgroundThe association of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) babA2 gene with gastric cancer (GC) was reported by several studies, but results were inconsistent. This meta-analysis was performed to investigate the relationship between H. pylori babA2 gene and GC risk.MethodsCase-control studies involving the association between H. pylori babA2 gene and GC risk were systematically identified from PubMed databases. A meta-analysis was used to pool studies and to estimate odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) of H. pylori babA2 gene associated with GC risk.ResultsTwenty studies were identified with a total of 1289 GC cases and 1081 controls. H. pylori babA2 gene was associated with an increased risk of GC by 2.05 fold (95% CI, 1.30–3.24, P = 0.002). In subgroup analysis, we found that H. pylori babA2 gene was significantly associated with GC risk in Asian population (OR = 2.63, 95% CI: 1.36–5.09 P = 0.004) but not in South American population (OR = 1.35, 95% CI: 0.69–2.64, P = 0.379).ConclusionsThis meta-analysis indicates that H. pylori babA2 gene may be associated with increased risk of GC, especially in Asian population.