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Prevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection in the general population evaluated by a resident-register-based epidemiological study



The current status of Helicobacter pylori infection in Japan has not been investigated. We evaluated the status of H. pylori infection in a Japanese general population using large-scale resident-register-based sampling.


All 6069 adults in a rural town and 6000 adults in two urban cities (3000 each), selected by register-based random sampling, were enrolled in our health check-up program. Antibody titers against Helicobacter pylori (cut-off value was 3 U/mL by Eiken E-plate) were evaluated, and subjects with a positive result were encouraged to undergo further examinations.


A total of 1586 subjects participated in serum sampling. The overall prevalence of H. pylori infection was 40.0% (634/1586), and it increased with age both in rural and urban areas. Although the overall positive rate was higher in the rural area (49.4%) than in the urban areas (35.6 and 32.3%), there was no difference in H. pylori status of younger subjects between the two areas. Among 634 patients with a positive titer, 374 (59.0%) underwent further examinations including endoscopic examination, and 180/634 (28.4%) patients received eradication therapy. Gastric neoplasms (three adenocarcinomas and one adenoma) were found in our screening program.


We clarified population-based random sampling data of H. pylori infection in a Japanese general population. In younger subjects, a decrease in the prevalence of H. pylori infection was confirmed both in rural and urban areas. This provides basic information for establishing a strategy to reduce gastric cancer deaths.

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This research was partly funded by a grant from the Japanese Ministry of Health, Labour, and Welfare (19HC1001), Viral Hepatitis Research Foundation of Japan and a scholarship grant from AbbVie Inc.

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Authors and Affiliations



MI and JT contributed to this work as corresponding authors. MI, KC, and JT designed the study. AS, MM, MK, YN, KA, HI, SO, BE, KK, TA, TH, TS, and JT participated in the acquisition of data. MI, AS, TA, and JT participated in the analysis and interpretation of the data. MI drafted the manuscript. AS, TA, and JT revised the manuscript. All authors approved the final version of the manuscript.

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Correspondence to Masanori Ito or Junko Tanaka.

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JT received a scholarship grant from AbbVie Inc.

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Ito, M., Sugiyama, A., Mino, M. et al. Prevalence of Helicobacter pylori infection in the general population evaluated by a resident-register-based epidemiological study. J Gastroenterol 57, 540–546 (2022).

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  • Helicobacter pylori
  • General population
  • Resident register