• 1 Department of Biological Sciences, Sunway University, Bandar Sunway, Malaysia
  • 2 Department of Basic Medical Sciences, College of Medicine, University of Sharjah, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
  • 3 College of Arts and Sciences, American University of Sharjah, University City, Sharjah, United Arab Emirates
J Appl Microbiol, 2021 Sep;131(3):1039-1055.
PMID: 33368930 DOI: 10.1111/jam.14981


Cancer is a prominent cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, in spite of advances in therapeutic interventions and supportive care. In 2018 alone, there were 18·1 million new cancer cases and 9·6 million deaths indicating the need for novel anticancer agents. Plant-based products have often been linked with protective effects against communicable and non-communicable diseases. Recently, we have shown that animals such as crocodiles thrive in polluted environments and are often exposed to carcinogenic agents, but still benefit from prolonged lifespan. The protective mechanisms shielding them from cancer could be attributed to the immune system, and/or it is possible that their gut microbiota produce anticancer molecules. In support, several lines of evidence suggest that gut microbiota plays a critical role in the physiology of its host. Here, we reviewed the available literature to assess whether the gut microbiota of animals thriving in polluted environment possess anticancer molecules.

* Title and MeSH Headings from MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine.