Background: Serum response factor (SRF) is crucial for gastric ulcer healing process. The study determined if gastric ulcer tissues up-regulate SRF and if such up-regulation correlated with co-morbidities and the risk of recurrent bleeding.Methods: Ulcer and non-ulcer tissues were obtained from 142 patients with active gastric ulcers for SRF expression assessed by immunohistochemistry. Based on the degree of SRF expression between these two tissue types, SRF up-regulation was classified as strong, intermediate, and weak patterns. The patients were followed-up to determine if SRF up-regulation correlated to recurrent bleeding.Results: Gastric ulcer tissues had higher SRF expression than non-ulcer tissues (p < 0.05). Patients with strong SRF up-regulation had lower rates of stigmata of recent hemorrhage (SRH) on the ulcer base than the others (p < 0.05). Multivariate logistic regression confirmed that co-morbidities and weak SRF up-regulation were two independent factors of recurrent gastric ulcer bleeding (p < 0.05). Combining both factors, there was an 8.29-fold (95% CI, 1.31~52.62; p = 0.03) higher risk of recurrent gastric ulcer bleeding.Conclusions: SRF expression is higher in gastric ulcer tissues than in non-ulcer tissues. Weak SRF up-regulation, combined with the presence of co-morbidities, increase the risk of the recurrent gastric ulcer bleeding.
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