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World J Gastroenterol. Mar 21, 2011; 17(11): 1383-1399
Published online Mar 21, 2011. doi: 10.3748/wjg.v17.i11.1383
Molecular cross-talk between Helicobacter pylori and human gastric mucosa
Vittorio Ricci, Marco Romano, Patrice Boquet
Vittorio Ricci, Department of Physiology, Human Physiology Section, University of Pavia Medical School, 27100 Pavia, Italy
Marco Romano, Department of Internal Medicine, Chair of Gastroenterology, Second University of Naples, 80131 Naples, Italy
Patrice Boquet, Department of Clinical Bacteriology, Nice University Medical School, 06202 Nice, France
Author contributions: All authors equally contributed to this paper.
Correspondence to: Vittorio Ricci, MD, PhD, Department of Physiology, Human Physiology Section, University of Pavia Medical School, Via Forlanini 6, 27100 Pavia, Italy. vricci@unipv.it
Telephone: +39-382-987254 Fax: +39-382-987254
Received: September 17, 2010
Revised: December 19, 2010
Accepted: December 26, 2010
Published online: March 21, 2011

Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) has co-evolved with humans to be transmitted from person to person and to colonize the stomach persistently. A well-choreographed equilibrium between the bacterial effectors and host responses permits microbial persistence and health of the host, but confers a risk for serious diseases including gastric cancer. During its long coexistence with humans, H. pylori has developed complex strategies to limit the degree and extent of gastric mucosal damage and inflammation, as well as immune effector activity. The present editorial thus aims to introduce and comment on major advances in the rapidly developing area of H. pylori/human gastric mucosa interaction (and its pathological sequelae), which is the result of millennia of co-evolution of, and thus of reciprocal knowledge between, the pathogen and its human host.

Keywords: Helicobacter pylori, Gastric mucosa, Pathogen/host interaction, Gastric diseases, Bacterial virulence factors, CagA, VacA