People with a history of gum disease are up to 52 per cent more at risk of throat and stomach tumours, US experts say.
The danger is even greater for those who have previously lost two or more teeth, Harvard University’s public health school found.
Previous findings on the relationship of gum disease and tooth loss with oesophageal and gastric cancer have been inconsistent, the authors said.
The authors concluded: “Together, these data support the importance of oral microbiome in oesophageal and gastric cancer.
“Further prospective studies that directly assess oral microbiome are warranted to identify specific oral bacteria responsible for this relationship.
“The additional findings may serve as readily accessible, non-invasive biomarkers and help identify individuals at high risk for these cancers.”