Are There Stem Cells in the Esophagus and Stomach?

Researchers have identified potential stem cells in human esophagus and stomach, as well as those in metaplastic esophagus that could lead to esophageal cancer, according to the April issue of Gastroenterology. Stem cells have been reported to exist in the basal layer of the human esophagus—their progeny are believed to

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Molecular Mechanisms of Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass

Many of the beneficial effects of Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), including improved glucose homeostasis, require the actions of melanocortin-4 receptors (MC4Rs) on autonomic neurons, according to the March issue of Gastroenterology. Fasting glycemia often improves within days of RYGB (see below figure), which produces greater improvements in glucose homeostasis than

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Does a Response to Proton Pump Inhibitor Therapy Indicate GERD?

Just because a patient’s upper gastrointestinal symptoms are alleviated by proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) doesn’t necessarily mean that they have gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), according to the December issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. The efficacy of PPI therapy often is tested to determine whether patients’ symptoms are acid-related and

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How Dangerous Are H pylori-Negative Idiopathic Bleeding Ulcers?

Patients with a bleeding peptic ulcer not caused by Helicobacter pylori infection or non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are at considerable risk of recurrent bleeding and death. Furthermore, acid-suppressive drugs do not protect these patients, according to the October issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Peptic ulcers that are not associated

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Treating Rumination and Supragastric Belching

Baclofen is an effective treatment for patients with rumination or supragastric belching/aerophagia, according to the April issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Rumination syndrome is characterized by the effortless, often repetitive regurgitation of recently ingested food into the mouth; it results from contraction of the abdominal muscles and a subsequent

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An Aspirin a Day Won’t Kill You, But it Might Cause GI Bleeding

Taking an aspirin a day reduces the risk for death, but increases odds of gastrointestinal (GI) bleeding, according to a large meta-analysis published in the September issue of Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology. Daily low doses of acetylsalicylic acid (ASA, also known as aspirin, 75 to 325 mg per day) are

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Surviving Childhood Cancer Increases GI Risks

Individuals who received therapy for cancer during childhood have an increased risk of developing GI complications later in life, according to Robert Goldsby et al. in the May issue of Gastroenterology. About 80% of children who receive cancer therapy survive more than 5 years; therapies can be especially toxic to

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