Colorectal cancer (CRC) is one of the most frequent and deadly neoplasms worldwide. Genetic factors, lifestyle habits, and inflammation are important risk factors associated with CRC development. In recent years, growing evidence has supporting the significant role of the intestinal microbiome in CRC carcinogenesis. Disturbances in the healthy microbial balance, known as dysbiosis, are frequently observed in these patients. Pathogenic microorganisms that induce intestinal dysbiosis have become an important target to determine the role of bacterial infection in tumorigenesis. Interestingly, the presence of different bacterial strains, such as Fusobacterium nucleatum, has been detected in tissue and stool from patients with CRC and associated with substantial clinical and molecular features, as well as with patient therapy response. Therefore, understanding how the presence and levels of F. nucleatumstrains in the gut affect the risk of CRC onset and progression may inform suitable candidates for interventions focused on modulation of this bacteria. Here we review new insights into the role of gut microbiota in CRC carcinogenesis and the clinical utility of using the detection of F. nucleatum in different settings such as screening, prognosis, and microbiota modulation as a means to prevent cancer, augment therapies, and reduce adverse effects of treatment.
© 2020 S. Karger AG, Basel.