Potential Markers Identified for Early Diagnosis of Oral Cancer

Potential markers Identified for Early Diagnosis of Oral Cancer

New study suggest that certain bacteria and fungi in sufficient amounts and possibly interactive ways may play a part in the development of oral tongue cancer.

Study published in Oncotarget on December 19, 2017 by team of researchers from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine, Cleveland Clinic, and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center has found that bacterial diversity and fungal richness are significantly less in tumor tissue as compared to their matched non-tumor tissues.

Late detection and physical symptoms such as lesions can result into prognosis of oral cancer spreading it to other body sites. In the new study, scientist extracted DNA tissue from 39 paired tumor and adjacent normal tissues from oral cancer patients. Firmicutes was the most abundant bacterial phylum and was significantly increased in tumor compared to non-tumor tissue. In total, the abundance of 22 bacterial and seven fungal genera was significantly different between the tumor and adjacent normal tissue including Streptococcus, which was significantly increased in the tumor group.

“Our findings mean that it may be possible to perform precautionary testing in patients at high-risk for oral tongue cancer,” said the study’s co-senior author Mahmoud A. Ghannoum, PhD, professor in the Department of Dermatology at Case Western Reserve School of Medicine and University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center. “If the patterns that we found are present in people who are not yet showing signs of lesions, we could begin treatment early, offering the possibility of better patient outcomes.”

Although the causes of oral tongue cancer are not clear, genetic mutations play a role, while smoking and chewing of tobacco, alcohol consumption, and poor dental hygiene are correlated with the development of this cancer type. While the bacteriome is increasingly recognized as playing an active role in health, the role of the mycobiome has been less studied in oral tongue cancer. According to Cancer Biomarkers Market report published by Coherent Market Insights, markers can indicates health condition and the underlying disease condition. Bacteria found in blood or tumor tissue in oral cavity can be used as marker to detect oral cancer.

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