Gut Bacteria Linked to Colon Cancer Among African-Americans

The Physicians Committee

Gut Bacteria Linked to Colon Cancer Among African-Americans

March 17, 2017

Gut bacteria linked to colorectal cancer risk is more abundant among African-Americans, according to research published online in Gut. Researchers studied 329 colonic tissue biopsies from patients at the Chicago Colorectal Cancer Consortium. African-Americans had twice as much Bilophila wadsworthia, sulfide-producing, inflammatory bacteria linked to cancer growth in their gut, compared with non-Hispanic white participants. Intake data also showed African-Americans had higher intakes of meat, fat, and animal protein, dietary components which promote the growth of these bacteria. Researchers suspect a high-fat, high-protein diet alters bile acids and thus increases cancer risk.

These data support recent findings suggesting dietary choices play a larger role than genetics in colorectal cancer risk.

Yazici C, Wolf PG, Kim W, et al. Race-dependent association of sulfidogenic bacteria with colorectal cancer. Gut. Published February 2, 2017.

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