FMT for Crohn’s Disease -Small Study

A recent prospective open-label study (Suskind DL, et al. Inflamm Bowel Dis 2015; 21: 556-63) adds a bit more information on fecal microbial transplantation (FMT) for individuals with Crohn’s disease (CD). This study included 9 patients, ages 12-19, and 11 authors.

Study details:

  • Pretreated with rifaximin 200 mg TID x 3 days and Miralax 17 gm TID x 2 days prior, and omeprazole day before and morning of procedure
  • Patients continued on prior treatment: 4 on methotrexate, 2 on thiopurine, and 3 on mesalamine (1 mesalamine patient was receiving methotrexate also)
  • Stool donor was a screened parent
  • Stool administered via NG
  • Stool DNA studied –>metagenomic sequencing

Key findings:

  • FMT engraftment was demonstrated in 7 of 9 patients
  • Mean PCDAI improved –baseline 19.7 –>6.4 at 2 weeks–>8.6 at 6 weeks
  • 5 of 9 patients who did not receive additional medical therapy were in remission at 6 and 12 weeks.

One particular advance with this study was the correlation between microbial species before and after FMT.  One speculation from the authors was that “the more divergent a Crohn’s patient is from his donor the more the potential benefit of transplantation.”  Thus, this same study with unrelated donor stool (eg. OpenBiome) would be of interest as well.

My Take: While this study offers encouragement for bigger studies, we will not know if FMT is effective (& how to administer optimally) until we have studies with more patients than authors.

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1 thought on “FMT for Crohn’s Disease -Small Study

  1. Pingback: Keeping Up with Clostridium Difficile | gutsandgrowth

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