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A new study published in PLOS ONE concluded that Salmonella has a unique characteristic allowing it to penetrate through a cell barrier and replicate inside its host. Scientist have now developed a non-toxic strain of Salmonella to penetrate and target cancer cells that may lead to treatments actively targeting and controlling the spread of cancer. The researchers said “Salmonella strains have a natural preference for infiltrating and replicating within the cancer cells of a tumor, making the bacterial an ideal candidate for bacteriotherapy. …..the use of live bacteria as therapy to treat medical conditions, like cancer.”

Researchers developed  CRC2631, a Salmonella strain that was genetically modified to render the bacteria non-toxic and enhance its natural ability to target and kill cancer cells without harming normal, healthy cells. This Salmonella strain was administered directly into the circulatory system of mice with prostate cancer. Results show that the mice tolerated the treatment well and the prostate tumors decreased by about 20% when compared with a control group,  The success of the study was dependent upon the strain of Salmonella, CRC2631, that was collected and stored in a test tube at room temperature for more than 50 years. It differs from that used by other researchers trying to obtain the same results because it is unique and essential to the study.