Increased translocation of bacteria from the gastrointestinal tracts of tumor-bearing mice.

Infection and Immunity
R L PennR D Berg


Aerobic gram-negative bacilli and other indigenous gastrointestinal (GI) bacteria are important opportunistic pathogens in immunosuppressed cancer patients. These same bacteria frequently translocate from the GI tracts of mice immunosuppressed by single injections of certain anticancer drugs or by T-lymphocyte impairments. Since similar cellular and humoral immune deficiencies may be present in the tumor-bearing host, we sought to determine if progressive growth of a tumor alone would be sufficient to enhance the translocation of indigenous bacteria from the murine GI tract. Pathogen-free DBA/2 mice were injected intraperitoneally with 10(6) viable sarcoma 180 (S-180) cells or 0.5 ml of sterile buffer. Mesenteric lymph nodes, livers, spleens, and kidneys were tested for the presence of translocated aerobic GI bacteria on various days after tumor injection. Immunity was assessed by measuring footpad delayed-type hypersensitivity and serum hemagglutinins to sheep erythrocytes. Overall, translocated aerobic GI bacteria infected 33 of 92 S-180-bearing mice (36%) and only 9 of 99 control mice (9%) (P less than 10(-6)). Cumulatively, 50 of 460 sites (10.9%) in S-180-bearing mice were infected with translocated GI bacteria as opposed ...Continue Reading


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