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Fusobacterium Nucleatum Overview


In a new study, a group of researchers has identified a distinct subtype of the Fusobacterium nucleatum that’s found in relatively greater quantities in colorectal cancer (CRC) tumour.


Facts for prelims

Fusobacterium nucleatum Overview:

  • Fusobacteria are anaerobic bacilli, typically Gram-negative, with species-specific habitats in the human mouth, gastrointestinal tract, and other locations.
  • Historically viewed as an opportunistic pathogen due to its frequent detection in anaerobic samples from patients with various infections.
Research Highlights:
  • Researchers initially examined the genomes of F. nucleatum strains isolated from human colorectal tumors and from individuals without cancer. Among its several known subspecies, only one, termed F. nucleatum animalis (Fna), was consistently identified in the tumor samples.
  • Further genetic analyses revealed the subdivision of Fna into two distinct groups.
  • While both groups were present in approximately equal proportions in oral samples, only one, designated Fna C2, was notably abundant in colorectal tumor samples.
  • Fna C2 exhibited increased resistance to acidic environments, potentially facilitating its passage from the mouth to the intestines via the stomach.
  • Additionally, Fna C2 demonstrated the ability to conceal itself within certain tumor cells, potentially evading detection by the immune system. Moreover, it displayed adaptability to utilize nutrients prevalent in the gastrointestinal tract, distinct from those in the oral environment.

-Source: The Hindu

May 2024