Researchers determine oral bacteria accelerate pancreatic cancer development in mice

oral bacteria pancreatic cancer
Peopleimages12 123rf

A team in Israel has uncovered a pivotal link between oral bacteria and the onset of pancreatic cancer in mice.

Their study—published in Gut—delves into the intricate relationship between oral microbiota, notably Porphyromonas gingivalis, and the acceleration of pancreatic cancer development, offering crucial insights into early detection, prevention, and potential therapeutic avenues.

Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) has been connected to the presence of Porphyromonas gingivalis, a prevalent anaerobic bacterium known for its association with periodontal disease. 

Leveraging epidemiological clues, the team at Hebrew University-Hadassah Faculty of Dental Medicine embarked on a journey to elucidate the potential of P. gingivalis in driving the progression of pancreatic cancer.

Their research entailed a comprehensive examination of P. gingivalis translocation from the oral cavity to the pancreas using mouse models. By introducing the bacterium to genetically engineered mice predisposed to PDAC, the team uncovered compelling evidence of accelerated cancer development.

Key findings from the study indicate that viable P. gingivalis was found in the pancreas of healthy mice after applying it to the gums, and prolonged exposure caused changes in the pancreas, affecting its microbial balance. Additionally, applying P. gingivalis orally sped up the progression from early pancreatic abnormalities to pancreatic cancer in mice with a specific genetic mutation.

The research also showed that this genetic mutation helped P. gingivalis survive inside cells, and the bacteria supported the survival of pancreatic cancer cells even when conditions were tough.

“The study underscores the significance of considering oral health in understanding and tackling pancreatic cancer,” lead researcher Professor Gabriel Nussbaum said. 

“By exploring the role of bacteria like P. gingivalis, we’re not only shedding light on potential risk factors but also uncovering new avenues for intervention and treatment.”

Previous articleGood evidence confuses ChatGPT when used for health information 
Next articlePatients cop the brunt of private health’s soaring ‘management expenses’


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here