Oral microbiota and oral cancer: Review


In this review, we draw attention and discuss the risk factors and causes of the development of oral squamous cell carcinoma (OSCC) focusing on oral microbiota. Recently, a breakthrough in the study of cancer has been the discovery of the relationship between the presence of certain types of bacteria and the development of cancer in the human body. Studies have shown that, Porphyromonas gingivalis (P. gingivalis) bacteria that is responsible for the destructive processes in the oral cavity, could play an important role in the development of OSCC. In our continuing search for bacteria that causes oral squamous cell carcinoma, we came across the Pseudomona aeruginosa, which due to its metabolite properties, may play important role in carcinogenesis of oral cancer. One possible mechanism is the ability of Pseudomonas to synthesize nitric oxide (NO) that modulates different cancer-related appearances such as apoptosis, cell cycle, angiogenesis, invasion, and metastasis. We think that P. aeruginosa increases the concentration of NO by converting salivary nitrite to nitric oxide, and this is how it contributes to NO-related carcinogenesis. Early diagnosis and treatment of periodontitis are very important not only for patients’ oral health, but also for the prevention of OSCC development. Screening test for OSCC based on determination of salivary NO levels could be appealing and may prove to be useful assay for diagnosis and early detection of disease progression in oral cancer.



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Oral squamous cell carcinoma, oral microbiota, nitric oxide, Porphyromonas gingivalis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa.
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How to Cite
Kakabadze, M. Z., Paresishvili, T., Karalashvili, L., Chakhunashvili, D., & Kakabadze, Z. (2020). Oral microbiota and oral cancer: Review. Oncology Reviews, 14(2). https://doi.org/10.4081/oncol.2020.476