Well, crap – crap does a crappy job as a treatment sometimes (re: fecal trasnplants and IBD)

Well, this seems like seriously big news in the microbiome world: Fecal Tx Flunks IBD Test but Optimism High.  Charles Bankhead reports on results presented at the “Digestive Disease Week” meeting.  At the meeting Paul Moayyedi from McMaster University reported that a clinical trial of fecal microbial transplants (FMT for short) was stopped midway through the trial due to “lack of efficacy”.  More specifically Bankhead reports

The investigators found no significant differences in the primary outcome or any of the secondary outcomes, which included the Inflammatory Bowel Disease Questionnaire and the EQ5D health status assessment

The researcher seems enthusiastic about FMT still but certainly this means that FMT for IBD is not going to be like FMT for CDiff (just wanted to make sure I got in a lot of abbreviations there).  I am sure there will be much more to come on FMT and it would be good to see more detail on what was presented at the meeting (a paper, or poster, or such).  But for now, this hopefully will temper some of the overselling of FMT that is going around (e.g., Overselling the microbiome award: Mercola/Perlmutter on fecal transplants for severe neurological dysfunction).

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Author: Jonathan Eisen

I am an evolutionary biologist and a Professor at U. C. Davis. (see my lab site here). My research focuses on the origin of novelty (how new processes and functions originate). To study this I focus on sequencing and analyzing genomes of organisms, especially microbes and using phylogenomic analysis

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