Colon Cancer Linked to Mouth Infection, Gum Disease?
WEDNESDAY, Aug. 14 (HealthDay News) -- An infection from a common type of mouth bacteria can contribute to colorectal cancer, a new study suggests.
The bacteria, called Fusobacterium nucleatum, can attach to colon cells and trigger a sequence of changes that can lead to colon cancer, according to the team at Case Western Reserve University School of Dental Medicine.
The researchers also found a way to prevent the bacteria from attaching to colon cells.
The findings show the importance of good oral health, said Han, a professor of periodontics. She noted that levels of F. nucleatum are much higher in people with gum disease.
Although the study found a possible association between oral infection and colon cancer, it did not prove a cause-and-effect relationship.
The study was published in the journal Cell Host & Microbe, which also contained another study from a different research group showing how F. nucleatum can speed the accumulation of cancer cells.
The American Academy of Family Physicians outlines how to keep your teeth and mouth healthy.
SOURCE: Case Western Reserve University, news release, Aug. 14, 2013
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