Researchers led by Dr. Brian Iritani at The University of Washington found that mice that lack the immune inhibitory molecule Smad3 are acutely sensitive to both bacterially-induced inflammation and cancer. I actually study some of the Smad moelecues in Biology classes at University by performing Western blot plots.
Absence of Smad3 inhibits inflammation and increase susceptibility to colon cancer.
To examine whether Smad3 signaling contributes to development of colon cancer, mice deficient in Smad3 were studied. It was found that these mice are acutely sensitive to bacterially-induced inflammation and cancer due to both deficient T regulatory cell function and increased expression of proinflammatory cytokines.
“That the inflammatory response to microorganisms is a key event in these results reveals important ‘tumor-suppressive’ functions for Smad3 in T effector cells, T regulatory cells, and intestinal epithelial cells, all of which may normally limit the development of colon cancer in response to bacterial inflammation,” as stated by the researchers.