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Weakened, Radioactive Listeria Poison Metastases, Not the Gut

By Anette Breindl
Science Editor

Friday, April 26, 2013

Listeria monocytogenes' main medical claim to fame is that it causes food poisoning. But by combining a weakened strain of the bacterium with a radioactive payload, scientists have used Listeria to kill metastases from pancreatic cancer. The bacteria were less effective at taking out the primary tumors. But, corresponding author Claudia Gravekamp said, "we are quite successful" at dealing with the primary tumors – "primary tumors can be removed by surgery or radiation."

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