Autoimmune gastritis: Pathologist's viewpoint

Irene Coati, Matteo Fassan, Fabio Farinati, David Y. Graham, Robert M. Genta, Massimo Rugge

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

103 Scopus citations


Western countries are seeing a constant decline in the incidence of Helicobacter pylori-associated gastritis, coupled with a rising epidemiological and clinical impact of autoimmune gastritis. This latter gastropathy is due to autoimmune aggression targeting parietal cells through a complex interaction of auto-antibodies against the parietal cell proton pump and intrinsic factor, and sensitized T cells. Given the specific target of this aggression, autoimmune gastritis is typically restricted to the gastric corpus-fundus mucosa. In advanced cases, the oxyntic epithelia are replaced by atrophic (and metaplastic) mucosa, creating the phenotypic background in which both gastric neuroendocrine tumors and (intestinal-type) adenocarcinomas may develop. Despite improvements in our understanding of the phenotypic changes or cascades occurring in this autoimmune setting, no reliable biomarkers are available for identifying patients at higher risk of developing a gastric neoplasm. The standardization of autoimmune gastritis histology reports and classifications in diagnostic practice is a prerequisite for implementing definitive secondary prevention strategies based on multidisciplinary diagnostic approaches integrating endoscopy, serology, histology and molecular profiling.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)12179-12189
Number of pages11
JournalWorld Journal of Gastroenterology
Issue number42
StatePublished - Nov 14 2015


  • Autoimmune gastritis
  • Carcinoids
  • Metaplasia
  • Operative link for gastritis assessment staging

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Gastroenterology


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