There is great interest in understanding the role of the microbiome in cancer. Researchers at The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James) are carrying out studies investigating whether smoking-related changes in the oral microbiome raise the risk of disease.
Currently, four OSUCCC – James researchers, including Purmina Kumar, BDS, MS, PhD, are collaborating to learn whether a food-based approach using a novel black raspberry drink might help prevent oral cancer, with a focus on how the microbiome may play a key role in this relationship.
The study, titled “Interactive Omics: Black Raspberry Metabolites and the Oral Microbiome in Smokers,” is supported by a five-year, $3.1 million grant (CA188250) from the National Cancer Institute. Read the article in the Spring 2016 issue of Frontiers.
Image above: The oral microbiome of a smoker. Healthy bacteria (green and blue) and pathogenic bacteria (red and orange) reside on the gum epithelium. Three neutrophils (blue) on the surface work to clear the pathogens. A neutrophil within the epithelial (lower right) releases cytokines to draw more immune cells to the site. The resulting chronic inflammation facilitates cancer development in the epithelial cells.
(Note: cells and bacteria not drawn to scale.)