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A Pill Made Of Poo Makes a Giant Step Closer to Public Release



Knowledge Nuggets:

  • Researchers are conducting a study to assess the potential benefits of fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT), encapsulated in what they call “crapsules,” for patients with liver cirrhosis.
  • FMT, which involves introducing healthy gut bacteria from a donor into a patient, has been used in both humans and animals. It is already approved by the FDA for treating life-threatening Clostridium difficile infections.
  • Cirrhosis, a life-threatening condition characterized by the replacement of healthy liver tissue with scar tissue, leaves patients vulnerable to C. diff infections.
  • The trial will last for two years and will involve cirrhosis patients randomly assigned to receive either the FMT capsules or a placebo.

In a bid to offer hope to patients suffering from liver cirrhosis, researchers are testing a rather unconventional approach: fecal microbiota transplantation (FMT), encapsulated in what they’re humorously dubbing “crapsules.”

These capsules, thankfully devoid of any unpleasant taste or smell, contain healthy gut bacteria from a donor, offering a potential new avenue for treating cirrhosis.

Liver cirrhosis is a severe, life-threatening condition where healthy liver tissue is replaced with scar tissue.

This process hampers the liver’s functionality and leaves patients highly susceptible to infections like Clostridium difficile (C. diff). According to the Cleveland Clinic, cirrhosis is the seventh leading cause of death among adults aged 25 to 64 in the United States.

Despite its eyebrow-raising methodology, FMT has a track record of use in humans since 1958 and in animals for about 100 years.

In 2022, the Food and Drug Administration approved FMT for treating severe C. diff infections, a critical development since these infections often prove fatal to cirrhosis patients.

The upcoming clinical trial, building upon the success of the earlier PROFIT trial, will last for two years and involve cirrhosis patients. They will be randomly assigned to receive either the FMT capsules or a placebo.

The researchers aim to observe the frequency of infections in both groups and to determine if FMT can prevent these infections and restore a healthy gut microbiome.


1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. lyn uzelac

    July 15, 2023 at 4:45 am

    FMT since 1958 – rubbish it was used long before that.

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