Environmental insults and compensative responses: when microbiome meets cancer

This is a Preprint and has not been peer reviewed. The published version of this Preprint is available: https://doi.org/10.1007/s12672-023-00745-9. This is version 4 of this Preprint.

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Sunil Nagpal, Sharmila S. Mande


Tumor microenvironment has recently been ascribed a new hallmark – the polymorphic microbiome. Accumulating evidence regarding the tissue specific territories of tumor-microbiome have opened new and interesting avenues. A pertinent question is regarding the functional consequence of the meeting of the host-microbiome with cancer. Given microbial communities have predominantly been explored through an ecological perspective, it is important that the foundational aspects of ecological stress and the fight to ‘survive and thrive’ are accounted for tumor-micro(b)environment as well. Building on existing evidence and classical microbial ecology, here we attempt to characterize the ecological stresses and the compensative responses of the microorganisms inside the tumor microenvironment. What insults would microbes experience inside the cancer jungle? How would they respond to these insults? How the interplay of stress and microbial quest for survival would influence the fate of tumor? This work asks these questions and tries to describe this underdiscussed ecological interface of the tumor and its microbiota. It is hoped that a larger scientific thought on the importance of microbial competition sensing vis-à-vis tumor-microenvironment would be stimulated.




Environmental Microbiology and Microbial Ecology Life Sciences, Life Sciences, Organismal Biological Physiology, Other Microbiology, Pathogenic Microbiology


Cancer, tumor microbiome, competition sensing, microbial ecology, stress response, tumor microbiota, ecological competition


Published: 2023-02-11 12:17

Last Updated: 2023-07-17 07:52

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CC-By Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International

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Conflict of interest statement:
Authors are salaried research Scientists at TCS Research. TCS holds a portfolio of patents in oncology, microbiome, nutrition and more.

Data and Code Availability Statement:
Not applicable