Case for a role of the microbiome in gynecologic cancers: Clinician's perspective

Ismail Mert, Marina Walther-Antonio, Andrea Mariani

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


In this review, we aimed to provide insight into the microbiome and its association with endometrial and ovarian cancer and their risk factors. We reviewed the literature focusing on the relationship between the microbiome and cancer, as well as the relationship between gynecologic diseases and cancers. The human body contains different kinds of microorganisms in various body parts, which is termed the microbiome. The number of microorganisms that live in and on the human body is greater than that of the human germ and somatic cells by 10-fold. The relationship between a human and their microbiome is complex; it is also one of the most important components of homeostasis. Impairment of microbiome–host homeostasis has been associated with obesity, several cancers, preterm labor, inflammatory and allergic conditions and neurodevelopmental disorders. Direct and strong causal relationships have been established for several cancers and microorganisms, such as gastric lymphoma and Helicobacter pylori infection. Interestingly, eradication of the infectious agents has also been shown to be therapeutic. The association between cancer and the microbiome, however, is more complicated than a 1 bacteria–1 cancer model, and a shift in a healthy microbiome can result in various cancers via inflammation, change in microenvironment or DNA-damaging toxins. The human microbiome is an integral part of homeostasis. Understanding the mechanisms that cause dysbiosis will enable us to elucidate the pathways that result in malignancy and investigate new treatment modalities.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1693-1704
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology Research
Issue number9
StatePublished - Sep 2018


  • endometrial cancer
  • microbiome
  • ovarian cancer

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology


Dive into the research topics of 'Case for a role of the microbiome in gynecologic cancers: Clinician's perspective'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this