Caution urged on faecal transplant therapy

SENIOR gastroenterologists have urged caution on use of faecal microbiota transplantation (FMT) for recurrent Clostridium difficile infection, despite publication of guidelines by an international working group.

The emerging therapy, which involves re-populating a person’s bowel with healthy gut flora using suitable donor faecal matter, was “safe, inexpensive and effective”, according to the group’s recently published paper.

“The rationale behind FMT is simple: antibiotics and other factors disrupt the normal balance of colonic flora and reduce ‘colonisation resistance’ allowing C. difficile strains to grow,” according to the authors, who include Professor Tom Borody from the Centre for Digestive Diseases, Sydney.

“By introducing normal flora via donor faeces, the imbalance can be corrected, the cycle interrupted and normal bowel function re-established,” they wrote.

Case series suggested recurrent C. difficile infection