Gut colonization by colibactin-producing bacteria is associated with colorectal cancer. Recent work by Prof. Thomas Meyer and others has uncovered its footprint in human cancer genomes. While this unique mutational signature is indicative of colibactin’s role in cancer causality, additional mechanisms appear to account for full-blown cell transformation. In a new article published in Cancer Cell, Hilmar Berger and Thomas F. Meyer portray their theory of how a failure of adequately resolving DNA damage causes genomic aberrations and chromosomal instability. In turn, these underpinnings of DNA damage constitute the main starting point for colibactin-driven cancer.
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