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Current Colorectal Cancer Reports

, Volume 13, Issue 6, pp 429–439 | Cite as

Diet, Gut Microbiota, and Colorectal Cancer Prevention: a Review of Potential Mechanisms and Promising Targets for Future Research

  • Mingyang Song
  • Andrew T. Chan
Nutrition and Nutritional Interventions in Colorectal Cancer (K Wu, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Nutrition and Nutritional Interventions in Colorectal Cancer

Abstract

Diet plays an important role in the development of colorectal cancer. Emerging data have implicated the gut microbiota in colorectal cancer. Diet is a major determinant for the gut microbial structure and function. Therefore, it has been hypothesized that alterations in gut microbes and their metabolites may contribute to the influence of diet on the development of colorectal cancer. We review several major dietary factors that have been linked to gut microbiota and colorectal cancer, including major dietary patterns, fiber, red meat and sulfur, and obesity. Most of the epidemiologic evidence derives from cross-sectional or short-term, highly controlled feeding studies that are limited in size. Therefore, high-quality large-scale prospective studies with dietary data collected over the life course and comprehensive gut microbial composition and function assessed well prior to neoplastic occurrence are critically needed to identify microbiome-based interventions that may complement or optimize current diet-based strategies for colorectal cancer prevention and management.

Keywords

Gut microbiome Antibiotics Dietary pattern Fiber Red meat Processed meat Sulfur Obesity Short-chain fatty acid Hydrogen sulfide Sulfur-reducing bacteria Fusobacterium nucleatum Colorectal neoplasia 

Notes

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare they have no conflict of interest.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Clinical and Translational Epidemiology UnitMassachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  2. 2.Division of GastroenterologyMassachusetts General HospitalBostonUSA
  3. 3.Department of NutritionHarvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthBostonUSA
  4. 4.Channing Division of Network Medicine, Department of MedicineBrigham and Women’s Hospital, and Harvard Medical SchoolBostonUSA
  5. 5.Broad Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and HarvardCambridgeUSA

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