EASD: Fecal Transplant Flushes Insulin Resistance
Obese people with a condition known as metabolic syndrome or prediabetes saw an improvement in their insulin sensitivity after having a transplant of fecal matter from healthy slim individuals.
Autologous Transplant & Fecal (Allogenic) Transplant
Fecal transplantation programs, which are uncommon, are already being used at a few centers in the United States based on some evidence suggesting efficacy in extremely difficult to treat gastrointestinal infections with the bacteria Clostridium difficile. Both hormones and the gut play a critical role in obesity and diabetes linked with obesity researchers have expanded their research and focus on bacteria found in the gut.
Human Clinical Pilot Study
The study consisted of eighteen obese men ranging in age from twenty-one to sixty-five all of the men had metabolic syndrome (prediabetes) none of the men had ever taken any medication for the metabolic syndrome and had not taken any type of antibiotics in the previous three months. All eighteen of the men had jejunum biopsies (the jejunum is the middle section of the small intestine and a biopsy removes a tiny part for testing.) The man also had a bowel lavage (cleans the bowel) to clear their own native bacteria. They were then randomized to either allogenic transplant (the patient receives the healthy feces) from lean male donors or autologous transplantation (some of the patients own feces is harvested and replaced back in the patients body.
It took approximately six weeks before any noticeable changes took place. “However, there were significant improvements in peripheral insulin sensitivity after six weeks in the group that received feces from lean donors compared with those who had an autologous (own feces) transplant.” The researchers also stated there was no change in the men’s diets or physical activity levels during the study.
More studies need to be done before the transplants can be approved as a new treatment for metabolic syndrome or prediabetes.