Colorectal cancer (CRC) is the third most common type of cancer globally, having increased more than 35% in terms of incidence between 2012 and 2020. Although still scarce, studies indicate that natural killer (NK) cells and the intestinal microbiota are deeply associated with the initiation and progression of CRC. NK cells can induce apoptosis by releasing specific cytokines and activating signaling pathways that can suppress tumor growth. On the other side, patients with CRC present significant alterations in their intestinal microbial populations and metabolites, which can be reversed by medicinal plants and foods, as suggested by experimental studies. While some foods, such as red and processed meat, can increase the risk of developing CRC, others, like fruits and vegetables, can be protective. Recently, several berries have been associated with protective effects in preclinical and clinical studies with CRC. Jaboticaba (Myrciaria jaboticaba) is an anthocyanin- and tannin-rich Brazilian berry with attested in vitro antiproliferative effects in CRC cell lines. Further in vivo studies with this product can be a promising path towards finding new tools for CRC prevention. Therefore, the present study aims to understand the preventive effects of the addition of freeze-dried jaboticaba peel on the diet of wild-type mice with CRC induced by azoxymethane and dextran sodium sulfate, and on ApcMin/+ mice with CRC induced by dextran sodium sulfate. For the study, clinical, histopathological, physiological, and microbiota-related aspects will be analyzed. In particular, mechanisms associated with how intestinal microbial and metabolites of jaboticaba peel consumption affect NK cells-linked signaling pathways will be elucidated.
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: