Can intestinal microbiota be associated with non-intestinal cancers?

Posted by: | October 11, 2017 | Comments



While the role of intestinal microbiota is increasingly recognized in the etiology of digestive cancers, its effects on the development of cancer in other parts of the body have been little studied. Through new-generation sequencing, we aimed to identify an association between the structure of intestinal microbiota and the presence of eye disc tumor in Drosophila larvae. First, we observed a parental effect on the diversity and structure of bacterial communities. Second, we identified a bacterial signature (at the family level) of cancer: cancerous larvae host a significantly lower relative abundance of Bacillaceae than individuals that did not develop the tumor. Thus, for the first time, we showed that a non-digestive cancer, i.e., in the brain, could be associated with an altered composition of the gut microbial community. Finally, we discuss the potential implications of the immune system in the gut–brain axis concept to explain the long-distant effect of intestinal microbiota on brain tumors. We also highlight the potential of our results in a therapeutic perspective for brain cancer that could be generalized for other cancers.


Camille Jacqueline, Lionel Brazier, Dominique Faugère, François Renaud, Frédéric Thomas & Benjamin Roche. Scientific Reports 7, Article number: 12722 (2017). doi:10.1038/s41598-017-11644-9. Received: 09 May 2017 Accepted: 25 August 2017 Published online: 05 October 2017.

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