December 11, 2019

    Gut E. coli bacteria magnified 10.000 times. Photo by E. Erbe and C. Pooley, USDA, ARS, EMU, via Wikimedia Commons
    Gut E. coli bacteria magnified 10.000 times
    American and French studies have found that the efficiency of immunotherapy to treat cancer depends on the population of gut bacteria (the microbiome) in the intestines. It appeared that patients with a diverse microbiome were more likely to respond to immunotherapy, and faecal transplants from patients that responded well to immunotherapy reduced tumour growth in experimental mice. These studies raise important questions on the use of antibiotics during immunotherapy, and the possibility to improve the outcome of immunotherapy by modulating the microbiome through the introduction of favourable bacteria species.

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