Objective: Helicobacter pylori antibiotic resistance is a constantly evolving process and local surveillance is warranted to guide clinicians in the choice of therapy.Materials and Methods: Antibiotic susceptibility testing was performed by E-test on 92 H. pylori strains, and resistance to clarithromycin and levofloxacin was also evaluated using a commercially available genotyping method.Results: In naive patients the resistance to clarithromycin, levofloxacin, and metronidazole was 37.7%, 26.2%, and 16.4%, respectively, significantly lower than the percentage found in treated patients. Concomitant resistance to >= 2 antibiotics was also observed in naive patients. The A2143G mutation of the 23S-rRNA gene was the most frequently detected, also in naive patients. The highest minimum inhibitory concentration (MIC)(50) value (256 mg/L) was associated with A2142 mutations in all the patients carrying them. For levofloxacin resistance a mutation in codon 87 was detected in 63.9% and in codon 91 in 36.1% of the H. pylori strains, without significant differences in the patients groups. A mutation in codon 87 was associated with the highest MIC50 value (32 mg/L).Conclusions: In our area, a high prevalence of H. pylori primary resistance was detected; these rates were higher in patients who had experienced failure of several courses of therapy. A better knowledge of the local epidemiology of resistance, and the genotypes responsible, will improve the H. pylori eradication rates.
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