February 5, 2019

Tongue Microbiome Could Identify Patients With Early Stage Pancreatic Cancer

The tongue microbiome could help identify patients with early stage pancreatic cancer. While previous research shows a strong connection between gut microbial alterations and pancreatic cancer, this study is the first to show changes in the tongue microbiome. 30 patients with early-stage pancreatic cancer and 25 healthy individuals participated in the study. Analysis of the tongue microbiome in all 55 subjects showed remarkably different bacteria between the two groups. Researchers identified 4 types of bacteria that distinguished those with pancreatic cancer from healthy individuals: low levels of Haemophilus and Porphyromonas and high levels of Leptrichia and FusobacteriumJournal of Oral Microbiology

→Takeaway: Pancreatic cancer is highly aggressive with a 1-year survival rate of 20% and a 5-year survival rate of 7%. Researchers who conducted the study believe that if these findings are replicated in larger studies, it could result in a much-needed microbiome-based early diagnostic/prevention tool for pancreatic cancer.