Serum pepsinogen concentrations as a measure of gastric acid secretion in Helicobacter pylori-negative and -positive Japanese subjects

Katsunori Iijima, Hitoshi Sekine, Tomoyuki Koike, Akira Imatani, Shuichi Ohara, Tooru Shimosegawa

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35 Citations (Scopus)


Background. Although previous studies have indicated that serum pepsinogen I levels, as well as the pepsinogen I/II ratio, were positively correlated with maximal gastric output, the relationship may be different between Helicobacter pylori-negative and -positive subjects. The aim of this study was to investigate the relation between serum pepsinogen concentrations and gastric acid secretion in H. pylori-positive and -negative subjects separately. Methods. The presence of H. pylori infection, the serum pepsinogen concentrations, and gastric acid secretion were investigated in 182 subjects without localized lesions in the upper gastrointestinal tract. Serum pepsinogen concentration was measured by radioimmunoassay, and maximal gastric acid output was estimated by an endoscopic gastrin test, as we have previously shown. Results. In H. pylori-positive subjects, serum pepsinogen I levels and the pepsinogen I/II ratio were significantly correlated with gastric acid secretion, although the latter showed a better correlation (r = 0.40 and 0.53, respectively). On the other hand, in H. pylori-negative subjects, serum pepsinogen concentrations were well correlated with acid secretion (r = 0.57), but there was no relation between the pepsinogen I/II ratio and acid secretion. Conclusions. The correlations between serum pepsinogens and gastric acid secretion differ, depending on the presence or absence of H. pylori infection. With the use of serum pepsinogens as a simple measure of gastric acid secretion, therefore, consideration of H. pylori infection status is needed. Because the determination of the acid secretory level has some clinical implications in both H. pylori-positive and -negative subjects, its estimation by serum pepsinogen concentrations can be of practical use.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)938-944
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of gastroenterology
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2005 Oct


  • Gastric acid secretion
  • H. pylori
  • Serum pepsinogen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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