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Monday, November 7, 2011

Bacteroides fragilis may be Associated with Colon Cancer

Posted by Dr Prahallad Panda on 10:45 AM Comments

Working with lab cultures and mice, Johns Hopkins scientists have found that a strain of the common gut pathogen Bacteroides fragilis causes colon inflammation and increases activity of a gene called spermine oxidase (SMO) in the intestine. The effect is to expose the gut to hydrogen peroxide – the caustic, germ-fighting substance found in many medicine cabinets -- and cause DNA damage, contributing to the formation of colon tumors, say the scientists.

Endoscopic image of colon cancer identified in...Image via Wikipedia; Colonoscopic view of Cancer ColonIt is a normal resident of gut flora, which houses trillions of species of microbes and is a gram-negative rod. It is linked to inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD) like crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. IBD causes polyps and predisposes person to colon cancer. It also causes diarrhoeal diseases and abscess formation in other organs.
Normally, it remains in the lumen of the gut, but when comes in contact with the cell lining causes diseases.
Apart from this pathogen, other microbes like Listeria monocytogenes and helicobacter jejuni are also being studied for possible association with colon cancer.

Published in MedicalXpress;
Common bacteria cause some colon tumors by altering peroxide-producing gene

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