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Numerous studies have shown a link between the presence of Helicobactor pylori and a range of gastro-intestinal diseases, including gastric ulcers, Barretts Syndrome and oesophageal cancer. 72 patients awaiting endoscopy were recruited to a study examining the effect on this virus of the consumption of Chinese tea. They each completed questionnaires about their current Chinese tea consumption habits and those when they were around 10-25 years old. This information was used to calculate the tea consumption indices (TCI). Gastric biopsies (two from the antrum and two from the corpus) were taken for histological examination for Helicobacter. Of the 72 patients, 42 (58.3%) were Helicobacter positive. The age, sex ratio and indications for endoscopy were similar in both Helicobacter-positive and -negative groups. Classifying patients using either current, past or total TCI, patients with high tea consumption had significantly lower Helicobacter infection rate than those with low tea consumption (45% compared to 74%, 42% compared to 67% and 40% compared to 83%, respectively). Helicobacter-negative patients had higher overall TCI than Helicobacter-positive patients (28.2:17.3). When current and previous histories were analysed separately, Helicobacter-negative patients also had a trend towards higher TCI currently (16.6:11.0) and in their 20s (11.6:6.1). This seems to indicate that Chinese tea consumption may decrease the chance of Helicobacter infection (Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology 2002;17(5):552-555.)