Implications of Gut Microbiota in Epithelial–Mesenchymal Transition and Cancer Progression: A Concise Review
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Advancement in the development of molecular sequencing platforms has identified infectious bacteria or viruses that trigger the dysregulation of a set of genes inducing the epithelial– mesenchymal transition (EMT) event. EMT is essential for embryogenesis, wound repair, and organ development; meanwhile, during carcinogenesis, initiation of the EMT can promote cancer progression and metastasis. Recent studies have reported that interactions between the host and dysbiotic microbiota in different tissues and organs, such as the oral and nasal cavities, esophagus, stomach, gut, skin, and the reproductive tract, may provoke EMT. On the other hand, it is revealed that certain microorganisms display a protective role against cancer growth, indicative of possible therapeutic function. In this review, we summarize recent findings elucidating the underlying mechanisms of pathogenic microorganisms, especially the microbiota, in eliciting crucial regulator genes that induce EMT. Such an approach may help explain cancer progression and pave the way for developing novel preventive and therapeutic strategies.