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May 18, 2007 — New research in lymphatic
cancer shows that bacteria can cause cancer to be more aggressive.
Patients with skin lymphoma may benefit from antibiotic treatments used
How does it work?
Patients with lymphatic cancer in the skin often have
bacteria-infections, which shows as e.g. eczema or skin-sores. The
research results indicate that bacteria can aggravate the cancer. The
bacteria activates the immune system, which indirectly stimulates the
cancer cells to spread further.
Professor Niels Ødum from Department of Molecular Biology,
University of Copenhagen says: - The results are surprising. Further
research is necessary to completely understand the mechanisms between
the immune response and development of lymphatic cancer, but we know
that more than half of the patients suffering from lymphatic cancer in
the skin also get bacteria skin-infections. We have helped to show how
these bacteria can affect the cancer disease in a negative way, and
that this may be relieved by a simple antibiotic treatment.
The research was conducted by a group of researchers from University
of Copenhagen, University of Pennsylvania and Copenhagen University
Hospital, and is funded by The Danish Cancer Society. The results are
published in “Blood” (Journal of the American Society of Hematology).
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