Microbial cancer therapeutics: A promising approach

Deepti Diwan, Lei Cheng, Zeba Usmani, Minaxi Sharma, Nicola Holden, Nicholas Willoughby, Neelam Sangwan, Rama Raju, Chenchen Liu, Vijai Kumar Gupta

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The success of conventional cancer therapeutics is hindered by associated dreadful side-effects of antibiotic resistance and the dearth of antitumor drugs' selectivity and specificity. Hence, the conceptual evolution of anti-cancerous therapeutic agents that selectively target cancer cells without impacting the healthy cells or tissues, has led to a new wave of scientific interest in microbial-derived bioactive molecules. Such strategic solutions may pave the way to surmount the shortcomings of conventional therapies and raise the potential and hope for the cure of wide range of cancer in a selective manner. This review aims to provide a comprehensive summary of anti-carcinogenic properties and underlying mechanisms of bioactive molecules of microbial origin, and discuss the current challenges and effective therapeutic application of combinatorial strategies to attain minimal systemic side-effects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)931-950
Number of pages20
JournalSeminars in Cancer Biology
Issue numberPart 3
Early online date9 May 2021
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2022


  • Bacteriocins
  • Bioactive molecules
  • Cancer
  • Genetically engineered microbes
  • Microbial therapy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Cancer Research


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