The role of eradication therapy in Helicobacter pylori-negative gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma remains controversial. The aim of this study was to investigate the efficacy of H. pylori eradication therapy as a first-line treatment for H. pylori-negative gastric MALT lymphoma.
A literature search of studies published until October 2019 was performed using electronic databases. Studies that reported treatment response to eradication therapy as an initial treatment for patients with H. pylori-negative gastric MALT lymphoma were eligible for inclusion. The primary outcome was the complete remission rate after eradication therapy.
Twenty-five studies were included in the analyses. The overall pooled complete remission rate was 29.3% (95% confidence interval [CI], 22.2%-37.4%, I  = 41.5%). There was no publication bias, and the sensitivity analyses showed consistent results. The pooled complete remission rates were lower in the subgroups of studies that had a higher incidence of translocation t(11;18)(q21;q21) (19.9%, 95% CI, 11.6%-32.0%), studies that used serological tests to exclude H. pylori infection (27.5%, 95% CI, 20.1%-36.4%), and studies where non-response to eradication therapy was determined at <12 months after treatment (27.0%, 95% CI, 15.5%-42.7%). Meta-regression analysis revealed that the pooled estimate was not significantly different in terms of the characteristics of individual studies.
Although the complete remission rate after eradication therapy is not high, it can be used as an initial treatment option in a subset of patients with H. pylori-negative gastric MALT lymphoma. Further studies to identify subgroups of patients who may benefit from eradication therapy are needed.

© 2021 John Wiley & Sons Ltd.