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Could gut bacteria drive the spread of breast cancer?

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Melanie Rutkowski

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Rutkowski reports."In

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the United States

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Please see our privacy policy for more information.The details of this article have been emailed on your behalf.Click here to return to the Medical News Today home page.Although the outlook of people with breast cancer has improved dramatically in recent years, predicting and preventing the spread of cancer to other parts of the body (metastasis) continues to be a major challenge in the medical community.Recent estimates place the number of women living with metastatic breast cancer in the United States at 154,794.Around 5–9% of new breast cancer cases are already in metastasis at the time of diagnosis, according to some estimates.There are several factors that influence the likelihood of breast cancer spreading. They altered the rodents' natural gut bacteria balance by giving them powerful antibiotics and performing a fecal microbiota transplant of dysbiotic, or macrobiotically unbalanced, fecal contents."When we disrupted the microbiome's equilibrium in mice by chronically treating them antibiotics, it resulted in inflammation systemically and within the mammary tissue," Rutkowski reports."In this inflamed environment, tumor cells were much more able to disseminate from the tissue into the blood and to the lungs, which is a major site for hormone receptor-positive breast cancer to metastasize," she explains."These findings suggest that having an unhealthy microbiome, and the changes that occur within the tissue that are related to an unhealthy microbiome, may be early predictors of invasive or metastatic breast cancer," continues Rutkowski."Ultimately, based upon these findings, we would speculate that an unhealthy microbiome contributes to increased invasion and a higher incidence of metastatic disease." And that, we think, is very much associated with a favorable outcome in the long term for breast cancer."Your privacy is important to us.Healthline Media UK Ltd, Brighton, UK.© 2004-2019 All rights reserved.

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