Tim F. Greten, MD, discusses the role of the gut microbiome in antitumor immunity in liver cancer.
Tim F. Greten, MD, deputy chief and senior investigator of the Thoracic and Gastrointestinal Malignancies Branch at the National Cancer Institute, discusses the role of the gut microbiome in antitumor immunity in liver cancer.
Through bile acid metabolism in the gut microbiome, specific bacteria can develop and lead to the accumulation of bile acids that control immune cells in the liver. This accumulation may influence CD4+ T cells and antitumor immunity, reports Greten.
Preclinical data showed enough promise to begin evaluating this in a clinical trial, adds Greten. In the trial, patients will receive antibiotics that target specific bacteria in the gut. From there, antitumor immunity will be measured to see if a response is found. This treatment modality could change the landscape of liver cancer because it does not fall under the category of chemotherapy or immunotherapy, concludes Greten.