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A Combination of Esomeprazole and Aspirin Reduce Tissue Concentrations of Prostaglandin E2 in Patients with Barrett’s Esophagus

BACKGROUND& AIMS: Proton pump inhibitors and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs might prevent esophageal adenocarcinoma in patients with Barrett’s esophagus (BE), but there are limited data from clinical trials to support this concept. We conducted a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 2 trial to assess the effects of the combination of aspirin (3 different doses) and esomeprazole on tissue concentrations of prostaglandin (PG) E(2) in patients with BE with no dysplasia or low-grade dysplasia. METHODS: Participants were recruited through the multicenter Cancer Prevention Network and randomly assigned to groups that were given 40 mg esomeprazole twice daily in combination with an aspirin placebo once daily (arm A; n = 30), with 81 mg aspirin once daily (arm B; n = 47), or with 325 mg aspirin once daily (arm C; n = 45) for 28 days. We collected esophageal biopsy specimens before and after the intervention period to determine the absolute change in mean concentration of PGE(2) (the primary end point). RESULTS: Based on data from 114 patients, baseline characteristics were similar among groups. The absolute mean tissue concentration of PGE(2) was reduced by 67.6 +/- 229.68 pg/mL in arm A, 123.9 +/- 284.0 pg/mL in arm B (P = .10 vs arm A), and 174.9 +/- 263.62 pg/mL in arm C (P = .02 vs arm A). CONCLUSIONS: In combination with esomeprazole, short-term administration of higher doses of aspirin, but not lower doses or no aspirin, significantly reduced tissue concentrations of PGE(2) in patients with BE with either no dysplasia or low-grade dysplasia. These data support further evaluation of higher doses of aspirin and esomeprazole to prevent esophageal adenocarcinoma in these patients. Clinical trial registration number NCT00474903.

Authors: Falk GW; Corley DA; Della'Zanna G; et al.

Gastroenterology. 2012 Oct;143(4):917-26.e1. Epub 2012 Jul 11.

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