Looking for specific microbes helps identify cancer; aids in early treatments

Subhajyoti De, associate professor of cancer systems biology at Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey together with RWJBarnabas Health, found that microorganisms may be new targets for earlier diagnosis or treatment of pancreatic cancer (1).

image source: dreamstime

According to the October 10 2022 Rutgers University press release, they were able to identify tumor-associated microbes and measure the activity of the host cells at the same time. They examined the microbiome of pancreatic tumors and identified particular microorganisms that are associated with inflammation and poor survival (2). 

Short of two weeks earlier, research by Lian Narunsky Haziza, a cancer biologist at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, found that tumors contain millions of microbes and fungi, representing dozens of species, according to a September 29 2022 New York Times article (2). 

So-called tumor microbiome is proving so distinctive in each type of cancer that some scientists hope to find early signs of hidden tumors by measuring the microbial DNA they shed into the blood, says the study led by Dr. Haziza. 

1) https://www.rutgers.edu/news/microorganisms-tumors-may-help-identify-new-approaches-treating-pancreatic-cancer

2) https://www.nytimes.com/2022/09/29/science/cancer-tumors-fungi-bacteria-microbiome.html


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