Helicobacter pylori is a spiral-shaped, flagellated, microaerophilic Gram-negative bacillus which colonizes the gastric mucosa of more than 50% of human population. The chronic infection generates a state of inflammation, which however is asymptomatic in the majority of the subjects. Nevertheless, in a subset of the H. pylori-infected population, the gastric inflammation may evolve toward chronic gastritis, peptic ulcer, gastric mucosa-associated lymphoid tissue (MALT) lymphoma, and gastric cancer. In brief, the stages of the H. pylori colonization are the following: crossing of the gastric mucus layer, adhesion to the gastric epithelium, and then obtaining nutrients while avoiding to be defeated by the host immune response. For some H. pylori colonization/virulence factors a specific role has been suggested in the development of the inflammation and in the impact on the host immune system. On the other hand, some hosts factors have been found relevant in originating chronic gastric inflammation and the subsequent pathological outcome in the presence of H. pylori infection. In other words, both bacterial action and host response contribute to the pathogenesis. The host-pathogen coadaptation resulted in a H. pylori colonization that in most of the cases might remain harmless; however, the concomitance of particular genotypes of both pathogen and host may concur to the development of severe pathology. Although a large body of clinical and experimental observations have been provided since the discovery of H. pylori, a further knowledge of the mechanisms of host-pathogen interaction and of those that lead to achieve protective immunity against this pathogen is still necessary to guide and make efficacious the fight against H. pylori.