What Causes Colon Polyps And Who Gets Them
Polyps are found in about 30% of the adult population over the age of 45-50. Men and women of all ethnicities are at risk of colon polyps and colon cancer.
A polyp is the result of genetic changes in the cells of the colon lining that affect the normal cell life cycle. Many factors can increase the risk or rate of these changes. Factors are related to your diet, lifestyle, older age, gender and genetics or hereditary issues. Important lifestyle factors predisposing to colorectal polyps and cancer include:
- Having a personal history of inflammatory bowel disease or primary sclerosis cholangitis.
How Are Colon Polyps Diagnosed
A doctor can find colon polyps in several different ways, including:
- Colonoscopy: A procedure in which a long, thin, flexible tube is placed through the rectum and into the large intestine. The tube has a camera that shows images on a screen and allows polyps to be removed.
- Sigmoidoscopy: A thin, flexible tube is inserted through the rectum to examine the last third of the large intestine .
- Computerized tomography scan: A radiology test that uses radiation to create pictures of the large intestine.
- Stool tests: You provide the lab with a stool sample, which will be tested for blood or genetic changes suggestive of polyps and cancer. If the test is positive, a colonoscopy is needed.
If any of the last tests are abnormal, a colonoscopy should be done to check for polyps and remove them.
Can Colon Cancer Be Prevented With A Probiotic
Colon cancer is an equal opportunity killer in America, cutting across all racial and ethnic lines. Out of the nearly 600,000 cancer deaths predicted in 2014, colon cancer is the third leading cause for men and women, according to the American Cancer Society.
Until recently, most of the deaths linked to colon cancer were confined to Americans over age 50. However, recent findings showed a decline in cases among older patients and an alarming rise among younger patients ages 20-49.
If a predictive model holds true over the next two decades, colon cancer cases will rise by 90 percent among patients ages 20-34 and 28 percent among patients ages 35-49.
There are many ways to prevent colon cancer, ranging from the simple consuming fewer processed meats, getting more exercise and taking a multi-vitamin to the complex and problematic taking an aspirin or Celebrex.
A growing number of studies have shown gut health may be the key to avoiding colon cancer altogether, giving rise to the belief that taking a probiotic and fewer antibiotics may be one more way to treat this non-discriminating killer.
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Get Screened For Colon Cancer And Take Probiotics
Based on a recent announcement from the U.S. Preventative Services Task Force, you may be worried about an alarming rise in colon cancer, especially if youre under age 50. The Task Force, along with the American Cancer Society, now advises colon cancer screenings starting at age 45.
Their advisory comes at a critical time, given colon cancer tops the list the deadliest form of cancer among men and is third among women in the 20-49 age range, not to mention the third deadliest cancer among all Americans overall.
This growing problem became a national concern with the recent death of actor and Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman at age 43, after being diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer in 2016.
Recognize the Colon Cancer Risks
An array of factors contributes to an increased risk of colon cancer, from inherited syndromes and a history of noncancerous colon polyps to family history and race.
The shared link among these very common problems is how these factors work to disrupt the healthy balance of bacteria in your gut.
Of course, eating a fiber-rich diet , spending a few minutes every day exercising and paying closer attention to the chemicals that surround you help to lower your colon cancer risks.
Did you know taking a probiotic may make a difference too?
The Probiotic Advantage
Prebiotics And Plant Fiber
Prebiotics are the soluble fiber which go through the gut unchanged and then are used by good colon bacteria as a fuel source for their own growth. These bacteria then make short chain fatty acids or butyrates. This substance renders the colon acidic and is a fuel source for the health of the colons own cells. The bacteria that live in our colon rely on the prebiotic fiber we eat to make substances that maintain the health of our own colon. Scientists call this mutualism. I call it amazing.
One of the possible benefits of this process is to make the colon cells less likely to turn into precancerous and cancerous cells. So what are these prebiotic soluble plant fibers? The ones we know most about are inulin and oligofructase, which are found in:
Psyllium, found in bowel supplements such as Metamucil are fermented by colon bacteria. It will reduce cholesterol, but other health benefits have still not been demonstrated. There are other plant fibers that are suspected of being prebiotic fibers as well, but the science on these is still not certain.
The bottom line is that almost any plant food can be a benefit to the colon. The prebiotic foods and dietary supplement powders have the most science behind them.
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How Can I Prevent Colon Polyps
Healthy habits can lower your odds of having colon polyps. For example, you should:
- Eat a diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, and fiber-rich foods like beans, lentils, peas, and high-fiber cereal.
- Lose weight if youâre overweight.
- Limit red meat, processed meats, and foods that are high in fat.
- Talk to your doctor about whether calcium and vitamin D supplements are right for you. Some studies suggest they could lower your odds of colon cancer, but others don’t.
- If you have a family history of colon polyps, ask your doctor if you should get genetic counseling and when you should start screening for polyps.
- Talk to your doctor about taking aspirin regularly. There is some evidence that aspirin has a preventive effect against colon cancer.
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: âColon Polyps,â âColonoscopy,â âVirtual Colonoscopy.â
Mayo Clinic: âColon Cancer,â âColon Polyps,â âRectal Bleeding,â âRectal Cancer,â “Fecal occult blood test.”
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy: âUnderstanding Polyps and Their Treatment.â
American Cancer Society: âUnderstanding Your Pathology Report: Colon Polyps ,â “American Cancer Society recommendations for colorectal cancer early detection,” “Frequently Asked Questions About Colonoscopy and Sigmoidoscopy,” “Stool DNA Testing for Colon Cancer,” “Colorectal cancer screening tests.”
American College of Gastroenterology: “Colon Polyps.”
Analysis Of Microbiota Composition
Sequence analysis was conducted with the Quantitative Insights Into Microbial Ecology bioinformatics pipeline. Reads were paired using fastq-join and those with a Phred quality score < 20 were discarded. An open reference scheme with uclust was used for clustering reads into operational taxonomic units at 97% sequence similarity, such that OTUs not matching a reference sequence in the Greengenes database, were clustered de novo. Python nearest alignment space termination tool was used for sequence alignment, and a taxonomic tree was constructed with FastTree-2. OTUs containing < 5 sequences were removed. After quality filtering, 11276994 sequences were retained, with an average of 99796 sequences per sample. Metrics for -diversity , including observed OTUs and phylogenetic diversity , and -diversity UniFrac distance were calculated on OTU tables rarefied to a depth of 10695 sequences.
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Harnessing Microbiome For Treatment
Our results suggest a significant role for histamine in the suppression of chronic intestinal inflammation and colorectal tumorigenesis , says Dr. Versalovic. We have also shown that cells, both microbial and mammalian, can share metabolites or chemical compounds that together promote human health and prevent disease.
Scientists are still unsure what the function of histamine is in relation to cancer in humans. Yet data collected from 2,113 people diagnosed with colorectal cancer, sourced from 15 separate datasets, suggested that individuals who have higher levels of HDC fare better and have a higher survival rate.
Taking this into consideration, the team hopes that probiotics that help to convert L-histidine into histamine could eventually be used to aid colorectal cancer treatment.
We are on the cusp of harnessing advances in microbiome science to facilitate diagnosis and treatment of human disease. By simply introducing microbes that provide missing life substances, we can reduce the risk of cancer and supplement diet-based cancer prevention strategies.
Dr. James Versalovic
Specimens And Dna Isolation
To better demonstrate the distribution of bacterial DNA in samples taken from healthy peoples and those with polyps or CRC, the percentage of those carrying bacterial DNA was measured. All samples of healthy people and those with polyps contained DNA of Lactobacillus acidophilus. However, 86% of the subjects with CRC had DNA of Lactobacillus acidophilus. 100% of samples had Lactobacillus plantarum DNA.
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The Future Of Health Probiotics
The field of using probiotics as a medical treatment for many diseases and conditions is only in its infancy. It is a very exciting time with constant developments and new research. Using Lactobacillus sakei for sinus health is a great step forward in understanding the sinus microbiome. The future for healthcare and sinus health has never looked brighter.
Dont Avoid Your Colonoscopy
Colonoscopies are important screening procedures that help physicians detect colorectal cancer early. Consequently, screening colonoscopies decrease the risk of developing as well as dying from colorectal cancer.xii
The purpose of this article is NOT to frighten or suggest that people should avoid a colonoscopy, even if you have irritable bowel syndrome or chronic inflammatory bowel disease. Instead, the purpose of this article is to encourage gastroenterologists and the general public to take steps to maintain and/or reestablish a healthy microbiome following a colonoscopy. The studies reviewed in this article indicate that taking probiotics before and/or following a colonoscopy will help to reduce the incidence of side effects and enhance the immune system to prevent post-colonoscopy infections.The fastest and most effective method of reestablishing a healthy microbiome is to directly ingest a product that delivers a combination of probiotic bacteria and postbiotic metabolites, such as Dr. Ohhiras Probiotics.
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Probiotics May Help To Prevent And Treat Colon Cancer
A new study looks at the potential of probiotics in the prevention and treatment of colorectal cancer associated with inflammatory bowel disease. So far, the results following tests in mice are promising, but further investigation is required.
According to the American Cancer Society, colorectal cancer is the third most
suggest that some of the leading factors for increased risk of colorectal cancer include having been diagnosed with inflammatory bowel disease, genetic factors, smoking, lack of physical activity, and a high body mass index .
A new study led by Dr. James Versalovic, a professor of pathology and immunology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, TX, now looks at whether certain probiotics may be used to prevent or treat colorectal cancer.
Dr. Versalovic and his colleagues focused on the role of Lactobacillus reuteri, which is a probiotic naturally found in the guts of mammals. This bacterium has to reduce inflammation in the intestine, so the team was interested in testing its effect on colorectal cancer tumors.
The researchers findings are published in The American Journal of Pathology.
been noted that the lack of an enzyme called histidine decarboxylase made the animals significantly more susceptible to developing colorectal cancer associated with inflammation of the bowels.
Hematoxylin & Eosin Staining And Immunohistochemistry
After the mice were sacrificed at the designated time, tissue samples, including the tumor and the spleen, were harvested. Tissue samples were fixed in 10% buffered formalin, embedded in paraffin, and sectioned. The sections were stained with hematoxylin and eosin and observed under light microscopy.
Tissue sections were dewaxed and hydrated using a xylene and gradient alcohol series and rinsed with PBS for 5 minutes. The sections were then incubated in methanol or a 0.3% hydrogen peroxide solution for 30 minutes to quench the activity of the endogenous peroxidase, and washed in buffer for 5 minutes. Subsequently, the tissue was incubated at room temperature with diluted normal serum for 20 minutes . After blotting the excess serum, the sections were incubated with a primary antibody for 30 minutes followed by a 5-minute buffer wash. Sections were then incubated for 30 minutes with a diluted biotinylated secondary antibody solution and washed for 5 minutes in buffer. Next, sections were incubated for 30 minutes with VECTASTAIN ABC reagent followed by a 5-minute buffer wash. Lastly, the sections were incubated in peroxidase substrate solution until the desired stain intensity had developed. Slides were then rinsed under tap water.
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Probiotics As Adjuvant In Adverse Events
The use of probiotics as adjuvant to improve the safety and gastrointestinal side effects during cancer treatment has also been explored by evaluating clinically the possible benefit of probiotics during and after surgery, radiation therapy, and chemotherapy. In this regard, probiotics are very attractive as a potential complement in these circumstances because they are inexpensive if we consider the sanitary costs for the cancer management .
The primary reasons that probiotics may be beneficial in mitigating the adverse gastrointestinal effects of cancer treatment are demonstrated in many animal models. Mice intraperitoneally-injected with 5-Fluorouracil developed diarrhea, but their symptoms were alleviated after treatment with a probiotic suspension. The study also demonstrated the mechanisms for which it occurs: Repairing damages in the jejunal villi, and reducing mRNA expression of TNF-alpha, IL-1 beta, and IL-6 in intestinal tissue . Another study underlined the activity of a mixture of different microorganisms in reducing the severity of diarrhea and improving histological examination in a mouse experimental model.
Another clinical trial demonstrated that the supplementation L. rhamnosus can reduce the severity of diarrhea, abdominal discomfort, and bowel toxicity in patients under treatment with 5-FU-based chemotherapy regimens.
Colon Cancer And Probiotics In An Animal Model
Inflammatory and carcinogenic stimuli cause changes in the composition of the gut microbiota that may predispose to tumorigenesis. In a study by Zackular et al. the treatment of mice with carcinogen azoxymethane , followed by the inflammatory compound dextran sulfate sodium , was associated with dramatic alterations in the microbial community and significant changes in relative microbial abundances. In addition, germ-free mice that were recolonized with the gut microbiota of tumor-bearing mice developed more tumors compared with those harboring the microbiota of naïve healthy mice after treatment with AOM/DSS. This study demonstrated that these changes directly contributed to tumor susceptibility and the alteration of the intestinal microbiota was an important determinant of colon tumorigenesis.
Although this mechanism of protection has been well demonstrated, other articles have suggested the role of specific commensal bacteria in limiting inflammation-associated colon tumorigenesis by activating several pathways, which are not definitively understood thus far .
Some authors reported that lower intracolonic pH values inhibited the proliferation, and consequently the activity, of putrefactive carcinogenic bacterial enzymes. Thus, Chang et al. attributed the reductions in the intestinal populations of carcinogenic bacteria to the low intracolonic pH exhibited by the rats treated with L. acidophilus at a high dosage for 10 weeks.
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Probiotics And Gastric Cancer
Ornithine decarboxylase is a crucial enzyme in the polyamine biosynthesis pathway and is responsible for catalyzing the decarboxylation of ornithine into putrescine . Ornithine decarboxylase is a neovascularization agent in tumoral cells and has been overexpressed in tumors of epithelial origin including colorectal, prostate, and gastric cancers . Russo and others demonstrated that treatment with L. rhamnosus GG homogenate and cytoplasm extracts significantly decreased the activity of ornithine decarboxylase, reducing the polyamine content of HGC-27 human gastric cancer cells. Furthermore, in comparison with the untreated control group, probiotic treatment considerably increased the ratio of Bax/Bcl-2 . Xie and others reported that 8-day postoperative probiotic supplementation in gastric cancer patients significantly reduced diarrhea occurrence. Furthermore, in probiotic-induced patients, the expression level of interleukin-6 , interleukin-8 , and tumor necrosis factor alpha was significantly decreased compared with that in patients in the control group .
TABLE 1. Probiotics and gastric cancer.
The Critical Role Of The Microbiome & lactobacillus Sakei
The body is a fantastic system that comprises of an impressive variety of subsystems which work in unison to keep us healthy. Interestingly, every single part of the body has a microbiome, from the skin to the gut to the mouth, the eyes, the vagina, the sinuses, and between the toes. Everyone has a unique microbiome and microbial communities vary per person.
For instance, a healthy skin, mouth, and gut have different microbes than a skin with acne, a mouth with gingivitis, and intestines with an inflammatory bowel disease. It has been proven that in people with a health condition or illness, the microbiomes are imbalanced or out of whack .
This includes the sinus microbiome, which researchers at the University of California found can become overpopulated by some bacteria, such as Corynebacterium tuberculostearicum . They also demonstrated that chronic sinusitis sufferers have lessLactobacillus sakei and lack the sinus bacteria diversity that healthy individuals possess. To deal with this bacteria imbalance, they thought that Lactobacillus sakei could help protect a majority of people against pathogenic bacteria, and so promote sinus health.
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