The Pathogenesis of Barrett’s Metaplasia and the Progression to Esophageal Adenocarcinoma

  • Brechtje A. GrotenhuisEmail author
  • J. Jan B. van Lanschot
  • Winand N. M. Dinjens
  • Bas P. L. Wijnhoven
Part of the Recent Results in Cancer Research book series (RECENTCANCER, volume 182)


The most important risk factor for the development of Barrett’s esophagus is the reflux of both gastric and duodenal contents into the esophagus. The reason why Barrett’s metaplasia develops only in a minority of patients suffering from gastroesophageal reflux disease remains unknown.The exact mechanism behind the transition of normal squamous epithelium into specialized columnar epithelium is also unclear. It is likely that stem cells are involved in this metaplastic change, as they are the only permanent residents of the epithelium. Several tumorigenic steps that lead to the underlying genetic instability, which is indispensable in the progression from columnar metaplasia to esophageal adenocarcinoma have been des­c­rib­ed. This review outlines the process of pathogenesis of Barrett’s metaplasia and its pro­gression to esophageal adenocarcinoma.


Lower Esophageal Sphincter Intestinal Metaplasia Esophageal Adenocarcinoma Columnar Epithelium Adenomatous Polyposis Coli Gene 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Brechtje A. Grotenhuis
    • 1
    Email author
  • J. Jan B. van Lanschot
  • Winand N. M. Dinjens
  • Bas P. L. Wijnhoven
  1. 1.Department of Surgery, Erasmus MCUniversity Medical CenterRotterdamThe Netherlands

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