Oral mycobiota and pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma

Ailin Wei, Huiling Zhao, Xue Cong, Linyao Wang, Yiyang Chen, Juxiang Gou, Ziyi Hu, Xiuying Hu, Yali Tian, Ka Li, Yufeng Deng, Haojiang Zuo, Mei Rosemary Fu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Early detection of pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC) is essential for survival. Preliminary research demonstrated significant associations between structural alternation of mycobiota and PDAC. In this study, we investigated the associations between oral mycobiota and PDAC. We further explored mycobiota biomarkers for PDAC detection. We enrolled 34 PDAC patients and 35 matched healthy controls from West China hospital in Southwest China. Demographic data, clinical information, and salivary samples were collected. Mycobiota characteristics were defined using Internal Transcribed Spacer (ITS) ribosomal RNA sequencing. We found that the PDAC patients had significant increase in fungal abundance (P < 0.001) and significant decrease in fungal diversity (P < 0.001) in comparison to the healthy controls. A higher abundance of Basidiomycota and Unclassifed_p_Ascomycota was associated with an increased risk of PDAC. With each increase of abundance of g__unclassified_k__Fungi and g__unclassified_p__Ascomycota in PDAC patients, the risk of pancreatic cancer increased by 1.359 odds and 1.260 odds, respectively. Aspergillus (AUC = 0.983, 95% CI 0.951–1.000) and Cladosporium (AUC = 0.969, 95% CI 0.921–1.000) achieved high classification powers to distinguish PDAC patients from the healthy controls. The rapid, inexpensive tests of ITS1 sequencing of mycobiota and PCR detection of potential fungal biomarkers make it promising for the clinical practice to use oral microbes for PDAC early detection and prevention. Results of our study provide evidence that salivary mycobiota may provide insights into cancer risk, prevention, and detection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1251
JournalBMC Cancer
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2022


  • Biomarkers
  • Oral mycobiota
  • Pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma (PDAC)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oncology
  • Genetics
  • Cancer Research


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