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Interrelation of bacteria in the intestine and growth of a cancerous tumor in the liver

13 October 2018, 09:00

Researchers have found that bacteria that inhabit the intestine can control the growth of the cancerous process in the liver.

Some species of Clostridium inhibit their own antitumor protection in the body and interfere with the processes of bile acid secretion.

A few years ago, scientists have experimentally confirmed that numerous colonies of intestinal microbes affect the quality of antitumor immunity. However, the development of such a mechanism in liver cancer was not traced.

It became unexpected for researchers that bacteria can control the immune response to primary and metastatic processes. The scientific project was organized by the staff of the American National Cancer Institute. The results obtained allowed a new assessment of the development of a cancerous tumor in the liver, as well as anew analysis of the possibility of treatment and prevention of oncology by the quality control method of intestinal flora.

The human digestive system is a place where a huge bacterial population inhabits the intestinal microflora. Several millions of bacterial and fungal colonies fully influence the health and health of a person. These microorganisms potentiate the response of the immune system to the introduction of pathogens; they participate in the processes of digestion and metabolism. In liver tissues, for example, the bacterial flora corrects the release of bile acids.

Expressed changes in the balance of microflora occur during periods of infectious diseases and metabolic disorders.

Scientists note that both primary and metastatic liver tumors are the most common cause of death of American cancer patients. The function of the liver is largely dependent on the state of the intestine, and the by-products of intestinal microorganism exchange through the bloodstream enter the liver. So it is: the blood flowing from the intestine is about 70% of the entire hepatic blood supply.

During the study, specialists involved in the process of experimental rodents with primary and metastatic liver cancer. Antibiotics, as it turned out, not only led to the suppression of the intestinal microflora, but also reduced the size of the tumor. The conclusion could only be one: certain bacteria potentiate the development of cancer.

"We asked ourselves the question: why did the rodents treated with antibiotics" turn on "the antitumor immunity, increase the population of NK killers and produce the protein CXCL16 in the structures of the endothelium? These cells are the natural enemies of a cancerous tumor in the body, "explains Tim Greten, one of the authors of the project. Scientists have found the answer to this question: bile acids control the expression of CXCL16. Therefore, the composition of bile in some way affects the antitumor protection.

At the final stage of the experiment, experts also discovered a bacterium that manipulates the immune response. It turned out to be Clostridia, a common microorganism that "lives" inside the intestines of humans and mammals. An increase in the colonies of Clostridium in the intestinal cavity led to a decrease in the number of NK killers and potentiated the development of cancer.

"Bile mass not only participates in emulsification and assimilation of lipids, but also affects the functionality of immunity", - comments the opening of one of the experts.

Probably, in the future, scientists will work on the possibility of using antibiotic therapy in the fight against cancerous processes in the liver.

The results of the study are presented on the pages of Science.

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Medical expert editor

Portnov Alexey Alexandrovich

Education: Kiev National Medical University. A.A. Bogomolets, Specialty - "General Medicine"

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