Epidemiological link between gastric disease and polymorphisms in vacA and cagA

Sungil Jang, Kathleen R. Jones, Cara H. Olsen, Young Min Joo, Yun Jung Yoo, In Sik Chung, Jeong Heon Cha, D. Scott Merrell

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71 Citations (Scopus)


Gastritis, peptic ulcer disease, and gastric cancer are a few of the diverse disease manifestations that have been shown to be associated with infection by Helicobacter pylori. Why some individuals develop more severe forms of disease remains largely unknown. In this study, 225 South Korean strains were genotyped for vacA and then analyzed to determine if particular genotypes varied across disease state, sex, or cagA allele. Of these strains, 206 strains carried an s1/i1/m1 allele, 11 strains carried an s1/i1/m2 allele, and 8 strains carried an s1/i2/m2 allele. By using Fisher's exact test, a statistical association between variations in the cagA and vacA alleles was identified (P = 0.0007), and by using log linear modeling, this variation was shown to affect the severity of disease outcome (P = 0.027). Additionally, we present evidence that variation within the middle region of VacA contributes significantly to the distribution of vacA alleles across gender (P = 0.008) as well as the association with disease outcome (P = 0.011). In this South Korean population, the majority of H. pylori strains carry the vacA s1/i1/m1 allele and the CagA EPIYA-ABD allele. These facts may contribute to the high incidence of gastric maladies, including gastric cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)559-567
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2010 Feb

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Microbiology (medical)


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