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Gut Bacteria Join the Anti-Cancer Defenses

In using advanced stool testing, we explain to patients how some bacteria in their colons can increase or decrease their risks of certain diseases.   This does not mean they will 100% get the disease but just have a greater chance than others of developing the disease.  Scientists have long known that some bacteria lessen the chance of colon cancer and appear to help cancer targeted immune therapies, but they did not know how.  Researchers in this study were able to identify at least one mechanism of immune boosting by colon bacteria as relating to a molecule called inosine.  Bacteria which produced this molecule were placed in otherwise germ free mice colons.  The molecule appears to improve the function of the immune system attempting to fight the cancer.  To improve cancer therapy in 2021 and beyond, we must understand how our microbiome interacts with our immune system so that we can harness all the weapons against cancer as is possible.

 

Original Article:
Lukas F. Mager, Regula Burkhard, Nicola Pett, Noah C. A. Cooke, Kirsty Brown, Hena Ramay, Seungil Paik, John Stagg, Ryan A. Groves, Marco Gallo, Ian A. Lewis, Markus B. Geuking, Kathy D. McCoy. Microbiome-derived inosine modulates response to checkpoint inhibitor immunotherapy. Science, 2020; eabc3421 DOI: 10.1126/science.abc3421

Thanks to Science Daily:

University of Calgary. “Researchers discover the microbiome’s role in attacking cancerous tumors.” ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 13 August 2020. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/08/200813144920.htm>.

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