Study identifies developmental factor for cervical cancer



LINCOLN, Neb. (KMTV) – The University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the Ocean Road Cancer Institute in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, have published new findings on cervical cancer and say they may have found an important link between those who develop it.

According to the researchers, bacteria could play an important role in the development of cervical cancer of the uterus. This comes after joining an ongoing body of research on microbiomes, or the existing bacterial composition in the human body.

"Some families of bacteria appear to be associated with higher degrees of precancerous lesions," said lead author Peter Angeletti, an associate professor at the Nebraska Center for Virology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. "What we know up to now, is that there is a relationship between the virus commonly associated with cervical cancer and the microbiome."

Researchers say more research is needed, but cervical bacteria could play an important role in cancer screening, diagnosis and perhaps even cancer treatment.

You can read the full press release below:

RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN CERVICAL MICROBIOMA AND CANCER DISCOVER

Lincoln, Nebraska, Feb. 19, 2019 – According to a recent global health study published by scientists from the University of Nebraska – Lincoln and the Dar es Salaam Ocean Road Cancer Institute, bacteria could play an important role in the development of cervical cancer in a woman, Tanzania.

As part of a growing body of research on how the "microbiome" – the composition of bacteria living inside the body – can improve health or contribute to disease, the new study found a significant link between the composition of the cervical microbiome of the woman and the presence of precancerous lesions in the cervix.

"Some families of bacteria appear to be associated with higher degrees of precancerous lesions," said lead author Peter Angeletti, an associate professor at the Nebraska Center for Virology at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. "What we know up to now, is that there is a relationship between the virus commonly associated with cervical cancer and the microbiome."

Although further research is needed, the results suggest that someday a cervical microbiota could be used for cancer screening and diagnosis, or that the cancer could be treated or prevented with the help of probiotics or d & # 39; antibiotics.

Researchers used "deep sequencing" – a way to genetically identify thousands of bacterial families at the same time – to identify bacteria in samples from 144 Tanzanian women who have been screened for cervical cancer of the uterus in Tanzania between March 2015 and February 2016.

Cervical cancer is a particularly devastating problem in sub-Saharan Africa, where 8% of women in the world over the age of 15 account for 14% of cervical cancer cases and 18% of cervical cancer deaths.

Of the women in the study, 126 had been tested positive for human papillomavirus (HPV), 41 for human immunodeficiency test (HIV) and 50 had been diagnosed with high-grade lesions likely to become cancerous.

According to a 2012 study, HPV is responsible for 99% of cervical cancer cases. HIV is strongly linked to an increased risk of HPV infection.

Published Feb. 19 in MBio, the study found that cervical microbiomes of women with high grade lesions had a more abundant and varied microbial mixture than women with no lesions or less severe lesions.

Angeletti said the data suggests that the Mycoplasma bacteria, in particular, could help promote the growth of HPV-related lesions. Mycoplasma is a group of small, usually parasitic bacteria that can cause pneumonia, pelvic inflammatory disease, and urinary tract infections. Some forms of bacteria can be sexually transmitted.

The study benefited from a $ 3.7 million grant from the National Cancer Institute. Members of the research team included Charles Wood, director of the Nebraska Center for Virology; John West, Associate Research Professor at the Center; Samodha Fernando, Associate Professor of Animal Science, Cameron Klein, PhD student who did most of the data analysis; and Crispin Kahesa and Julius Mwaiselage of the Ocean Road Cancer Institute.

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WRITER: Leslie Reed, University Communication


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