Eradication therapy for Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) has been established. However, the physiological factors influencing the success of treatment remain unclear. The aim of this study was to analyze these factors and to evaluate the efficacy of sofalcone on H. pylori eradication therapy. Forty-four H. pylori-infected and peptic ulcer patients were enrolled in this study. Twenty-seven patients were treated with lansoprazole (LPZ, 30 mg o.d. for 1-8 weeks) and amoxicillin (AMPC, 500 mg q.i.d, 1-2 weeks), followed by 8 weeks of treatment with famotidine (FAM, 20 mg o.d.). Moreover, sofalcone (SOF, 100 mg t.i.d) was administered to 17 patients throughout the therapeutic period. Endoscopic and serologic evaluations and the urea breath test (UBT) were performed before therapy. At the endoscopic examination, mucosal samples were biopsied and then tissue myeloperoxidase (MPO) content, an index of neutrophil infiltration was measured. Cure of H. pylori infection was determined 8 weeks after the cessation of LPZ. This eradication regimen afforded an overall cure rate of 63.0% (17/27) without SOF and 76.5% (13/17) with SOF. In the control group, treatment success was inversely associated with pre-UBT value (gastric urease activity), whereas this association was not observed in the SOF group. Furthermore, in the patients exhibiting a high pre-UBT value (>40%), a twofold higher eradication rate was obtained by the administration of SOF. In patients who were successfully eradicated, mucosal MPO level was slightly higher than those of unsuccessful cases, whereas there was no significant association with serum pepsinogen (PG I, PG II) concentration and its ratio (PG I/PG II). These results suggest that a low UBT value is a factor predicting treatment success. SOF administration may improve the eradication rate, especially in the high-UBT subgroup.
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