Skip to comments.Mutant gut bacteria reverse colon cancer in lab models
Posted on 06/17/2012 3:08:22 PM PDT by ConservativeMind
A mutant form of a meek microbe deals a gutsy blow to colon cancer, University of Florida scientists have discovered. The special bacteria halted abnormal inflammation, reduced precancerous growths and reversed progression of severe cancerous lesions in the large intestines of mice. The findings appear June 11 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.
We have demonstrated that our bacterial treatment can take on established colon cancer, said principal investigator Mansour Mohamadzadeh, a professor in the UF College of Veterinary Medicine department of infectious diseases and pathology and a faculty member in the UF College of Medicine division of gastroenterology, hepatology and nutrition in the department of medicine. This is huge, because people dont come to you 10 years before they have colon cancer saying, I may get colon cancer, can you treat me? They come to you and say, I have colon cancer.
For years researchers have understood that uncontrolled inflammation in the large intestine can result in various diseases, including colon cancer and inflammatory bowel diseases such as ulcerative colitis. The new study focused on understanding how to curb immune system processes in the gut that lead to harmful inflammation. Resulting treatments could work not just for diseases of the digestive tract, but also for other conditions such as diabetes and Sjögrens syndrome in which inflammation plays a major role.
Some inflammation in the gut is a good thing, as it serves to keep the bodys immune system in tip-top, disease-fighting shape. But under stress, the immune system overreacts with a cascade of inflammation-causing reactions. That can lead to afflictions in which the immune system attacks instead of protects the body. It can even cause colon cancer, which kills more than 50,000 Americans every year and is one of the nations leading causes of cancer deaths, according to the National Institutes of Health.
Mohamadzadeh, a member of the UF Shands Cancer Center and the UF Emerging Pathogens Institute, and colleagues previously demonstrated that a genetically modified form of the beneficial bacterium Lactobacillus acidophilus can bring overactive immune responses back to normal. They have now found that proteins on the surface of the bacteria can act on the immune system to either cause inflammation in the gut or tune it down.
The researchers removed an inflammation-causing gene from the bacterium, and the result was a form of the bacteria that was even better at controlling disease-causing inflammation. Moreover, mice with severe cases of polyps and cancerous intestinal lesions that were fed the modified bacteria had significantly reduced numbers of colon polyps compared with untreated mice, and showed no signs of active colon cancer or disease-causing inflammation.
This is a major discovery that defines how healthy microbes function in the gut, said Dr. Eugene B. Chang, the Martin Boyer professor of medicine at the University of Chicago Knapp Center for Biomedical Discovery. Chang was not involved in the UF study. This has far-reaching implications for the development of therapies derived from microbes that can treat many types of complex immune and digestive disorders.
The modified bacteria are easy and cost-effective to produce. Mohamadzadeh anticipates that a treatment for humans could be a pill that can be taken by mouth. Patients could receive the beneficial bacterial treatment in combination with surgery or other therapies.
To treat the underlying inflammation, that can cause all sorts of autoimmune problems as well as cancer, there is finally proof that common peppermint may work.
My gut feeling is to not get the bacterial treatment.
I’m glad the lab models are feeling better. Perhaps they would appreciate a card, or some flowers.
Hey, don’t make fun. Colon cancer is a tough thing. My mom died of it at 63, far too young.
I know I’m headed for it, probably. I have a very sensitive stomach, IBS type symptoms all the time.
I plan to get screened at 50, like everyone should — unless they have a big history, and then screening should start at 40.
It’s great being a lab rat.
Three square meals a day
No cats, hawks or other critters to bother you
Every night, sweet-sweet-sweet muskrat love mmmm mmmm mmmm
Great healthcare plan
Great dental plan
and most of all....YOUR DISEASES ARE CURED!!!
And to top it off, a great “retirement” plan....it’s just that no one sees a retired lab rat....just vague promises and funny looking photos from a place called “Disney”.
Oh well. Pass the bacon bits.
It may trigger the Zombie Apocalypse.
Shands had a great reputation in Florida...
Try Phillips Colon Health. I had the same thing for most of my adult life. Started taking those about a year ago. They worked for me within a few days. I can eat anything without fear now. Even Mexican food. :-)
So do I but will never get colon cancer. I always tell my GP not to send me to a GI Specialist because people with non-ulcerative IBS never get colon cancer.
The reason I don’t use peppermint is because it causes breakthrough heartburn at the other end of the GI, is there some way around that?
I’m a bit leery of using genetically altered bacteria. A more reasonable plan would be to eat a variety of natural bacteria found in fermented foods as well as lots of soluble fiber to keep your gut flora healthy.
For more information, see the blog - Cooling Inflammation by Dr. Art Ayers www.coolinginflammation.com
or the book, Wild Fermentation.
The most effective way of taking it was putting about a tsp of peppermint extract in a cup of water once or twice a day. It takes a few times before you get used to it, and a few to several days before the desired effect, but those who have tried it swear by it.
Peppermint has been used by herbalists for a very long time for this purpose, but only now is there a scientific justification for doing so.
I don’t know much about the heartburn issue.
Thanks I am seeing my gastrointerologist today, I will ask him about it.
This University of Maryland Medical Center evaluation is generally positive, with, “One study examined 57 people with IBS who received either enteric coated peppermint capsules or placebo twice a day for 4 weeks. Of the people who took peppermint, 75% had a significant reduction of IBS symptoms.”
As such, unless there is some other condition known to your doctor that would preclude this, you might try it as a home remedy, and a much less expensive one if you can choke down peppermint extract in water without heartburn.
I’ve read of some people who have just taken to chewing several peppermint Altoids after each meal.
I would suggest either grow your own peppermint or buy peppermint tea.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.