Thursday, December 6, 2018

Bacterial Protein promoting cancer

Researches at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, discovered that a protein interferes with the cell's ability to respond and repair DNA damage which is a known origin of cancer. The protein found is called DnaK which is a protein of mycoplasma bacteria. This was very interesting because I was unaware of the fact that bacterial infections (specifically mycoplasma bacteria) are found to cause forms of cancers. According to this article: "currently, approximately 20% of cancers are thought to be caused by infection". The researchers created a study in which they studied the effect of mycoplasma infections on the development of lymphoma. The study compared non-infected mice and how quickly they developed lymphoma to mice that were infected with mycoplasma. The study concluded that the mycoplasma infection led to an earlier development of lymphoma and that many cancer cells had the bacterial DNA of the mycoplasma, which meant that the infection did not have to persist to trigger cancer. Mycoplasma bacteria tend to be found in humans infected with HIV, meaning they are at a higher risk.

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  1. Really interesting article. I was reading the article and was taken back by what Dr. Tettelin said, "This raises the possibility that other bacteria have the same cancer-promoting ability." Meaning other bacteria that are more abundant in our daily lives may affect us more in terms of being exposed to cancer

  2. Cancer is still a very serious issue today and it has been very difficult to find the answers. Hopefully, we are getting close to solving the puzzle. For now, another goal should also be to try and prevent cancer from occurring in individuals in as many ways as possible.