Pole de gérontologie clinique, Centre hospitalier universitaire de Nantes, Nantes, France
EE MiHAR (microbiotes, hôtes, antibiotiques et résistance bactérienne), Institut de recherche en santé (IRS2), Université de Nantes, Nantes, France
Aging is a major risk factor of cancers. In recent years, several studies highlighted a change in the diversity and the abundance of the intestinal microbiota associated with aging. Moreover, epidemiological studies, experimental and clinical studies have suggested that the microbiota is implicated in cancer physiopathology and could modulate the efficacy and the tolerance of oncological treatments, for example the incidence of gastrointestinal toxicity and infectious disease. In this review, our objective was first to described the main studies that have focused on the composition of the microbiota associated with aging, cancer and during cancer therapies. Second, we discussed challenges and perspectives on cancer management and research, in elderly patients. Finally, we assume that further studies will confirm that the composition of the intestinal microbiota could be considered as a biomarker of frailty that could be used to optimize cancer management in elderly patients.