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Differential molecular changes in patients with asymptomatic long-segment Barrett's esophagus treated by antireflux surgery or medical therapy

      Abstract

      Background

      The Barrett's to adenocarcinoma sequence is characterized by molecular changes including activation of nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and related cytokines. In this observational nonrandomized study this molecular environment was compared in matched asymptomatic cohorts who had undergone either fundoplication or therapy with proton pump inhibitors (PPIs).

      Methods

      Asymptomatic patients with long-segment Barrett's esophagus had endoscopic biopsy specimens taken from 2 cm below the squamocolumnar junction for measurement of activated NF-κB and a panel of cytokines and growth factors.

      Results

      Thirty-seven patients were recruited (surgical: n = 18, medical: n = 19). The mean patient age was 51 years, and the mean follow-up period was 5.6 years. There were no differences in the length of Barrett's segment and endoscopic and histopathologic features in both groups. Mean activated NF-κB p50 and p65 subunits, interleukin (IL)-1α, IL-1β, and interleukin-8 levels, were significantly (P < .05) lower in the surgically treated group.

      Conclusions

      This study provides proxy support to the thesis that antireflux surgery may provide an environment that is less inflammatory and tumorigenic than that observed in medically treated patients.

      Keywords

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