The researchers say exposure to salmonella is “a risk factor for colon cancer and tumor growth.”

Bowel cancer is a daunting prospect: in the UK alone, about 16,800 people die from the disease each year. Fortunately, there is growing evidence that the risk of this deadly disease can be reduced by making lifestyle changes. However, a new study has identified a risk factor that may be harder to change.

Usually caused by eating raw or undercooked meat, poultry, and eggs, salmonellosis describes a common bacterial disease that affects the intestinal tract.

While salmonella can cause symptoms such as diarrhea, fever, and stomach cramps, some people with the infection show no symptoms, according to the Mayo Clinic.

Unfortunately, a new study published in the journal Cell Reports Medicine links exposure to salmonella bacteria with the risk of colon cancer.

By studying human colon cancer tissue samples and animal models, the researchers found that exposure to salmonella was associated with colon cancer that developed earlier and increased in size.

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The research team first looked at data from a retrospective study of colon cancer patients in the Netherlands.

This study found that tissue samples taken during routine salmonella antibody colon cancer surgery tended to come from people who had worse colon cancer outcomes.

Based on this finding, the new study focused on bacteria-exposed mice with colon cancer using the Salmonella strains isolated from the tissue samples described above.

The results showed accelerated tumor growth and larger tumors in Salmonella mice.

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They also saw an increase in the number of Salmonella moving into tumors.

Lead researcher Jun Sun said: “During infection, Salmonella hijacks major host signaling pathways, and these molecular manipulations can induce oncogenic transformation.

“The current study tells us that more research is needed on the relationship between salmonella exposure and colon cancer risk in the US, and that by simply practicing safe food preparation, we can potentially help protect ourselves.”

Sun employees in the Netherlands have also studied the bacteria in vitro by combining human cancer cells and precancerous cells with a Salmonella strain in the lab.

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They saw that even a single infection causes transformation, and that each Salmonella infection exponentially increases the rate of cell transformation.

Sun added: “Experiments in mice and tissue culture show that Salmonella infection has a chronic effect, accelerating tumor growth.

“These data tell us that we need to take a closer look at salmonella exposure as an environmental risk factor for chronic diseases such as colon cancer.”

The research paper was titled “Repeated exposure to non-typhoid Salmonella is an environmental risk factor for colon cancer and tumor growth.”

How to lower your risk of bowel cancer

Studies show that about half of all bowel cancers can be prevented by making simple changes to your diet and lifestyle.

There are a variety of lifestyle changes that can help reduce the risk of a fatal disease, ranging from eating healthy to not smoking.

A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and fiber should help.

Other measures, such as avoiding alcohol and increasing exercise, may also help.

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