In the gut, UVA finds healthy stomach microbes essential against cancer

In mice, disruptions in the microbiome cause breast cancer to increase in aggression.

Breast cancer (illustrative photo) (photo credit: INGIMAGE)
Breast cancer (illustrative photo)
(photo credit: INGIMAGE)
Melanie Rutkowski of the University of Virginia has discovered a relationship between the microbes living in the stomach of mice and breast cancer, a press release by UVA reported on Monday.
The studied disruption was treating mice with antibiotics, which caused inflammation in the mammary tissue.
The growth of two-thirds (65%) of breast cancer is dependent on hormones such as estrogen or progesterone. The disruption of the microbiome lead to an increase in the cancer’s ability to respond well to growth hormones and a rapid increase of the growth.
Rutkowski stressed that antibiotics should not be avoided by humans who need it, since mice are not people. The mice were given a lot of antibiotics with the expressed purpose of disrupting their gut-microbes population over a long period of time, not nearly the small dosage given to a sick person for a brief time.
The study is one of a growing trend of medical studies which points to the important role gut microbes have in general human health.