Coronavirus Information for the UC San Diego Community

Our leaders are working closely with federal and state officials to ensure your ongoing safety at the university. Stay up to date with the latest developments. Learn more.

A commensal strain of Staphylococcus epidermidis protects against skin neoplasia

TitleA commensal strain of Staphylococcus epidermidis protects against skin neoplasia
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2018
AuthorsNakatsuji T., Chen T.H, Butcher A.M, Trzoss L.L, Nam SJ, Shirakawa K.T, Zhou W., Oh J., Otto M., Fenical W, Gallo R.L
JournalScience Advances
Date Published2018/02
Type of ArticleArticle
ISBN Number2375-2548
Accession NumberWOS:000426845500032
Keywordsactivation; bacteria; base analog n-6-hydroxylaminopurine; bond formation; cancer; cells; cis-urocanic acid; cofactor-dependent resistance; escherichia-coli; Microbiota; Science & Technology - Other Topics

We report the discovery that strains of Staphylococcus epidermidis produce 6-N-hydroxyaminopurine ( 6-HAP), a molecule that inhibits DNA polymerase activity. In culture, 6-HAP selectively inhibited proliferation of tumor lines but did not inhibit primary keratinocytes. Resistance to 6-HAP was associated with the expression of mitochondrial amidoxime reducing components, enzymes that were not observed in cells sensitive to this compound. Intravenous injection of 6-HAP in mice suppressed the growth of B16F10 melanoma without evidence of systemic toxicity. Colonization of mice with an S. epidermidis strain producing 6-HAP reduced the incidence of ultraviolet-induced tumors compared to mice colonized by a control strain that did not produce 6-HAP. S. epidermidis strains producing 6-HAP were found in the metagenome from multiple healthy human subjects, suggesting that the microbiome of some individuals may confer protection against skin cancer. These findings show a new role for skin commensal bacteria in host defense.

Student Publication: 
Research Topics: