Helicobakter pylori avastamise lugu: kliinilised, immunoloogilised ja mikrobioloogilised aspektid. Eesti uurijate panus Nobeli preemiaga pärjatud uuringutesse. Discovery of H. Pylori: Clinical, Immunological and Microbiological Aspects. The Contribution of Estonian Scientists to Research That Was awarded a Nobel Prize

  • Heidi-Ingrid Maaroos
  • Marika Mikelsaar
  • Tamara Vorobjova


Discoveries that are directly able to change our understanding of
pathological mechanisms, prophylactics and the treatment of wide-spread human diseases deserve our undivided attention. Undoubtedly, the discovery of Helicobacter pylori (H. pylori) by Barry Marshall and Robin Warren in 1982, for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2005, is one of these great breakthroughs. The Australian researchers showed that H. pylori bacteria cause most peptic ulcers, chronic gastritis and gastric cancer. The hypothesis about microbes that are able to damage gastric epithelium has been supported by clinical data, and new biotechnological and visualization methods.
With the approval of this discovery scientists and specialists
from different branches of science began concomitant research that has yielded successful results in translational medicine. Researchers started epidemiological, microbiological and clinical studies of H. pylori immediately after the discovery of the bacteria in Estonia and the University of Tartu as well. A H. pylori research group that consisted of different specialists (gastroenterologists, surgeons, microbiologists, immunologists) from the University of Tartu Faculty of Medicine, Tartu University Hospital and Institute of Experimental and Clinical Medicine (in Tallinn) was formed. In this field, 18 PhD theses have been defended.
Professor Heidi-Ingrid Maaroos, a pioneer of H. pylori research in
Estonia, was decorated with the Marshall & Warren medal for her
long lasting research and development work in the field of gastrointestinal diseases and Helicobacter pylori on 27 September 2015 (she is the tenth researcher in the whole world who has been acknowledged like this up to now). The new approach to gastric diseases and the treatment of H. pylori infections allows to prevent the development of peptic ulcers and to reduce the risk of developing gastric cancer. The treatment of duodenal and gastric ulcers, previously known as unavoidably chronic diseases that are often exacerbated, is now effective
and previous principles of treatment have been fully reviewed.
Nowadays the management of H. pylori is approved and  recommend in diagnostic and treatment guides for the prevention and treatment of gastric diseases.