We will now try to determine whether these bacteria play a role in the onset of the disease or whether they appear afterwards.
It’s a chicken and egg question.commented Dr. Fred Saad, of the University of Montreal Hospital Center (CHUM).
If scientists ever conclude that bacteria are responsible for the presence of the disease, we can consider fighting it or preventing it with antibiotics. If we conclude instead that they are present in the urine after the onset of cancer, they could become biomarkers that will be added to the arsenal of screening tests available to doctors.
Researchers at the University of East Anglia, England, studied the cases of some 600 men with or without prostate cancer. They spotted five bacteria in the urine and tissues of men whose disease later took on an aggressive form.
All were anaerobic bacteria. Two of them, who were baptized Porphyromonas bobii and Varibaculum prostatecancerukiahad never been seen before.
It’s really a hope that would perhaps identify patients who are more at risk of having prostate cancer, and especially patients more at risk of having prostate cancer that requires caresaid Dr. Saad.
Some prostate cancers, he pointed out, are almost insignificant, in that they will never harm the patient. It might therefore be preferable, in these cases, never to find them, since the disadvantages of the treatment could potentially outweigh its advantages.
Canada is also a leader in this conservative approach to surveillance and was one of the first to decide that it is not necessary to treat all the prostate cancers that are detected, noted the Dr. Saad.
That being said, some patients will eventually die of their cancer,
despite everything we dohe said.
We need to find ways to maybe know who to target for biopsies, and especially who to target with more aggressive treatments.explained the specialist.
If the role played by bacteria in other diseases such as colon cancer or lung cancer is well known, it is less so with regard to prostate cancer or urinary or genital cancers,
so it’s a step in the right directionDr. Saad concluded.
The findings of this study were published by the journal European Urology Oncology.