Essay Example: The Role of Microorganisms in Oncogenesis

Published: 2023-02-13
Essay Example: The Role of Microorganisms in Oncogenesis
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Biology Problem solving Medicine Cancer
Pages: 5
Wordcount: 1230 words
11 min read

Even though there have been increasing researches on Viral oncology in the recent past, the bacterial role in mediating in the process of oncogenesis has been inadequately elucidated. As a means of preventing cancer spread in the human body, there is a need to understand the role of bacteria in spurring the spread of cancer within the body (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). This paper analyses the similarities and differences in the manner in which the role of bacteria in oncogenesis has been covered in both the peer-reviewed journal by Alicia and Julia as well as the newspaper article titled' In the Pancreases, common Fungi May Drive Cancer' by Knvul Sheikh retrieved from The New York Times.

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Newspaper Coverage

According to the newspaper article, the human body is teeming with trillions of bacteria inhabiting the mouth, skin as well as the coils of the intestines (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). Some of these bacteria are beneficial to the body as they help in digestion of food and protection against certain infections. However, the newspaper notes that certain bacteria within the body could result in severe illnesses within the human body (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). Most importantly, alongside the bacterial community, certain fungi, protozoa and viruses also inhabit the body.

However, the newspaper notes that there are more bacteria within the body than both the fungi, viruses and the protozoa. Research shows that a rapid increase in the population of the fungi in the body may result in the modification of the immune system of the body thereby significantly influencing the development of cancer within the body (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010).

The newspaper article indicates that a study published in the Journal Nature showed that fungi are capable of making their way deep into the pancreases which lies just behind the stomach. It has been found that in the human patients who have pancreatic cancer, the fungal population increases by over 3000 folds as compared to the pancreases of a normal healthy human being (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). This gives a clue on the relationship between fungi in the body and oncogenesis with the tissues. According to a study by New York University School of medicine, researchers were surprised to find numerous fungi populations of fungi inhabiting the pancreases of a cancer patient.

However, other researchers found out that certain microorganisms such as bacteria are capable of sneaking past the muscle that separates the pancreases and the guts (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). The findings also suggest that the fungi could also similarly colonize the pancreases. Therefore, microorganisms are some of the significant factors that need to be considered when investigating the factors that affect the proliferation of cancer within human tissues. For instance, the increasing populations of the fungi within the pancreases could be regarded as a biomarker in the development of cancer within the tissues.

The newspaper reports that by the end of the year some 57000 people will be diagnosed with the cancer of the pancreases in the United States. It is also indicated that three out of four patients die within the year of diagnosis and that only 1 out of 10 cancer patients live beyond five years of diagnosis (Chang & Parsonnet, 2010). This could be attributed to inadequate pancreases cancer screening equipment within the United States and beyond.

Journal coverage

The journal on the 'Role of Bacteria in Oncogenesis' by Alicia and Julie begins by acknowledging that even though several studies have been done on the causes of cancer, only a little information exists on the role of microorganism on cancer development within the human body (Sheikh, 2019). Because of the lack of adequate information, cancer prevention has become an uphill task in various countries across the world. Even as cancer becomes the leading killer disease in both the developed and undeveloped countries, a clear understanding of the role of bacteria in causing cancer has to be determined.

According to the article, a transmissible cancer cause had been suspected to exist as early as in the 16 century (Sheikh, 2019). Although bacteria was suggested as one of the reasons for cancer, it was not easy to pinpoint the specific bacterial cause of cancer. The journal indicates that microorganisms such as viruses and bacteria are responsible for the inflammation of the body tissues, thus spurring the development of cancer within the body. For instance, hepatitis B and C viruses are noted to cause chronic inflammation in oncogenesis.

Furthermore, chlamydia trachomatis, which is a bacteria transmitted sexually, could affect most tissues within the body, thus causing inflammations (Sheikh, 2019). The prolonged exposure to such inflammations results to cancer of the affected tissues such as cervical cancer et cetera. The bacterial inflammation theory has also been suggested to have a healthy relationship with colon cancers.

Some animal models have suggested the role of colonic microflora in causing colon cancer. For instance, in the mouse model, the germ-free mouse develops colon cancer more rapidly than the control mice (Sheikh, 2019). Although no bacteria could be pinpointed to cause cancer, there exists in the body characterized by inflammation of the body tissues make them culprits for the disease. As depicted in the journal, several studies show an increased number of Clostridium bacterial species in cancer patients as compared to the controls.

Most of the bacterial infections that promote cancer include H.pylori, Chlamydia and Mycoplasma infections et cetera (Sheikh, 2019). When steps towards malignancy have begun, they become irreversible; therefore, vaccination against some etiologic pathogens could help in the prevention of infections, thus reducing the risks of cancer.

Similarities between the Newspaper and the Journal Coverage.

Both the journal and the newspaper article acknowledge that microorganisms play critical roles in oncogenesis. The newspaper article indicates that an increased number of fungi in the internal organs such as the pancreases could result in pancreatic cancer. Most of these microorganisms penetrate the gut muscles and cause inflammation of the gut and pancreatic walls, thus leading to disease of the pancreases. However, both articles also appreciate that even though bacteria form large colonies, their relationship with cancer remains unclear (Sheikh, 2019).

Differences between the Newspaper and Journal Coverage

Even though both the newspaper and the journal article appreciate that microorganisms play a role in oncogenesis, the paper does it in a manner that can easily be understood by any layman. On the other hand, the journal uses more technical terms ranging from the names of the bacteria and the bacterial infections that could not be understood by ant reader except for the scientist who has a group of such biological terms as used in oncogenesis. For instance, the use of scientific bacterial names such as H.pylori, Chlamydia and Mycoplasma cannot be understood easily by any reader (Sheikh, 2019). Most significantly, the newspaper majorly focusses on pancreatic cancer caused by fungi, unlike the journal that generally focuses on various cancer cases caused by inflammation by a range of microorganisms such as protozoa, fungi and bacteria.

In conclusion, research indicates that microorganisms play significant roles in the oncogenesis ranging from inflammation to the muscular penetrations by the increased fungal colony in the pancreases and other internal tissues. The newspaper article and the journal portray some significant similarities and differences with regards to the role of microorganisms in oncogenesis.


Chang, A. H., & Parsonnet, J. (2010). Role of bacteria in oncogenesis. Clinical microbiology reviews, 23(4), 837-857. 10.1128/CMR.00012-10

Sheikh, K. (2019, October 3). In the Pancreas, Common Fungi May Drive Cancer. Retrieved from

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