Possible link between periodontal disease and colon cancer

The bacteria associated with the most common cause of tooth loss in adults could be a precurser for the development of bowel cancer, according to a team of scientists.

The bacteria associated with the most common cause of tooth loss in adults could be a precurser for the development of bowel cancer, according to a team of scientists.

The link comes as scientists at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and the Broad Institute in America found an abnormally large number of Fusobacterium — a bacterium associated with the development of periodontal disease — in nine colorectal tumor samples, pointing to the possibility the two could be associated.

Bowel cancer, also known as colon cancer, is one of the top three deadly cancers in the UK. Around 35,000 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every year and about half of them die.

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