Studying the Gut Microbiome’s Links to Cancer


The Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota has announced that it is forming a team to study microbes in the gut and their influence on the development and treatment of cancer. This team is the first project funded by a Chainbreaker Breakthrough Cancer Research Grant; the funds for this grant were raised by the first Chainbreaker bike ride, which was held in 2017. The 2018 Chainbreaker ride was held on August. A story about this project appears on the cancer center's website: Chainbreaker ride funds cancer research team gut "bugs" and cancer at U of MN.

MSI PI Timothy Starr (assistant professor, Obstetrics, Gynecology, and Women’s Health) is one of the co-leaders of the group. Professor Alexander Khoruts (Medicine) is the other co-leader, and other members of the group will come from the UMN Medical School, the College of Biological Sciences, the College of Science and Engineering, the College of Pharmacy, and the BioTechnology Institute.

Professor Starr uses resources available through MSI to perform advanced genetics and informatics research aimed at understanding how cancers form. Several MSI researchers are using MSI for investigations into the human microbiome; some stories are linked below: