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Science. 2017 Dec 15;358(6369):1443-1448. doi: 10.1126/science.aal5240. Epub 2017 Nov 23.

Analysis of Fusobacterium persistence and antibiotic response in colorectal cancer.

Author information

1
Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
2
Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard, Cambridge, MA 02142, USA.
3
Brigham and Women's Hospital, Harvard Medical School, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
4
Vall d'Hebron University Hospital, Vall d'Hebron Institute of Oncology, Barcelona, CIBERONC, Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Spain.
5
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA 02115, USA.
6
Yale Cancer Center, Yale School of Medicine, New Haven, CT 06520, USA.

Abstract

Colorectal cancers comprise a complex mixture of malignant cells, nontransformed cells, and microorganisms. Fusobacterium nucleatum is among the most prevalent bacterial species in colorectal cancer tissues. Here we show that colonization of human colorectal cancers with Fusobacterium and its associated microbiome-including Bacteroides, Selenomonas, and Prevotella species-is maintained in distal metastases, demonstrating microbiome stability between paired primary and metastatic tumors. In situ hybridization analysis revealed that Fusobacterium is predominantly associated with cancer cells in the metastatic lesions. Mouse xenografts of human primary colorectal adenocarcinomas were found to retain viable Fusobacterium and its associated microbiome through successive passages. Treatment of mice bearing a colon cancer xenograft with the antibiotic metronidazole reduced Fusobacterium load, cancer cell proliferation, and overall tumor growth. These observations argue for further investigation of antimicrobial interventions as a potential treatment for patients with Fusobacterium-associated colorectal cancer.

PMID:
29170280
PMCID:
PMC5823247
[Available on 2018-12-15]
DOI:
10.1126/science.aal5240
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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