Stomach ulcer is caused by Helicobacter pylori which is found to reside in the human digestive system for a long time. It has remained in the same place despite the migration of early humans from Africa to other parts of the world 60,000 years ago.
This was disclosed by a study which was published in an online edition of Nature. According to Dr. Francois Balloux of University of Cambridge who led this research, this finding could throw light on anthropology and medicine as it provides an understanding about ulcers and also about human migration and diversification.
H.pylori is the only microbe known to thrive well in the acidic environment of the stomach and affects the mucus lining of duodenum and stomach. Until a few years back, peptic ulcers and gastritis was attributed to spicy food and stress but now it has been understood that H.pylori is the causative agent and the illness can be treated with antibiotics.
Dr Balloux compared the H.pylori and the human DNA sequence and concluded that variations in the gene pool occurred simultaneously with human dispersion from Africa. He also opined that this study will help us in understanding the population shift from in Europe, Asia and Africa.