Bio-Epi Seminar: Dr. Dominique Michaud

Event Type: 
  • Date:
    Sep 20 2013
    From:
    12:15pm to 01:15pm
    Location:
    120 Arnold House

    Dr. Dominique Michaud
    Professor of Epidemiology
    Brown University's Alpert Medical School

    "Do Bacteria Play a Role in Pancreatic Carcinogenesis?"

    Established risk factors for pancreatic cancer, including tobacco smoking, chronic pancreatitis, obesity, and type II diabetes, collectively account for less than half of all pancreatic cancer cases. Inflammation plays a key role in pancreatic carcinogenesis, but it is unclear what causes local inflammation, other than pancreatitis. Epidemiological data suggest that Helicobacter pylori may be a risk factor for pancreatic cancer, and more recently, mounting evidence suggests that periodontal disease and Porphyromonas gingivalis, a pathogen for periodontal disease, may also play a role in pancreatic carcinogenesis. Individuals with periodontal disease have elevated markers of systemic inflammation, and oral bacteria can disseminate into the blood, stomach, heart, and even reach the brain. These infections may contribute to progression of pancreatic cancer by acting jointly with other pancreatic cancer risk factors that impact the immune function, such as smoking and obesity, and the ABO genetic variant, recently linked to pancreatic cancer through genome-wide association studies. This talk will summarize epidemiological studies examining infections that have been linked to pancreatic cancer and discuss potential mechanisms.

    *Food will be provided*

    For more information, contact: Dr. Brian Whitcomb at bwhitcomb@schoolph.umass.edu or 413-577-7440